Chorus Aviation Announces Jazz’s Intention to Adopt the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

HALIFAX, April 9, 2020 /CNW/ – Chorus Aviation Inc. ("Chorus") is announcing the intention of its subsidiary, Jazz Aviation LP ("Jazz"), to adopt the Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy (‘CEWS’). Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Air Canada Express flying operations undertaken by Jazz have been reduced by approximately 90% until at least the end of May, and Jazz expects to incur significant revenue losses for the last half of March and the second fiscal quarter. Any near-term recovery in Jazz’s flight operations depends exclusively on the lifting of domestic and trans-border travel restrictions and protocols.

As of March 15, 2020, Jazz’s active workforce in Canada consisted of approximately 5,000 employees. On April 6, 2020, Chorus announced significant measures to reduce costs and bolster its liquidity. This included the difficult decision to reduce Jazz’s workforce by approximately 60%, or 3,000 employees. Subject to the adoption of the CEWS into law, Jazz intends to adopt the CEWS to assist its employees.

"Our employees are amongst the best in the business and play an integral role in supporting Air Canada’s domestic and trans-border operations. I’m particularly pleased that our unionized labour groups support this initiative as we are hopeful the CEWS will provide much needed support to our employees through this difficult period," stated Randolph deGooyer, President of Jazz.  

"I applaud the members of our federal government for tabling this important subsidy to help employers and their employees manage through this very uncertain time," stated Joe Randell, President and CEO, Chorus. "Every measure must be taken to preserve our strength and resources in order to successfully emerge from this crisis when it abates." 

All areas of the organization are under review with the objective of reducing costs to ensure a strong company that is ready to resume normal operations as soon as possible.

For further information regarding the Capacity Purchase Agreement (‘CPA’) under which Jazz performs flight operations for Air Canada, please refer to Chorus’ Annual Information Form dated February 12, 2020.

Forward-Looking Information

This news release contains ‘forward-looking information’. Forward-looking information is identified by the use of terms and phrases such as "anticipate", "believe", "could", "estimate", "expect", "intend", "may", "plan", "predict", "potential", "project", "will", "would", and similar terms and phrases, including references to assumptions. Forward-looking information involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking information. Actual results may differ materially from results indicated in forward-looking information for a number of reasons, including a prolonged duration of the COVID-19 outbreak and/or further restrictive measures to contain its spread, the emergence of other epidemic diseases, the evolving impact of COVID-19 on Chorus’ contractual counterparties, the continued payment of amounts due under the CPA, aviation industry and general economic conditions, the failure to successfully conclude negotiations or complete previously-announced transactions to preserve liquidity (including the credit facility with Export Development Canada and the refinancing of existing unencumbered aircraft), as well as the risk factors identified in Chorus’ Annual Information Form dated February 12, 2020 and in Chorus’ public disclosure record available at Statements containing forward-looking information in this news release represent Chorus’ expectations as of the date of this news release (or as of the date they are otherwise stated to be made) and are subject to change after such date. Chorus disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise such statements to reflect new information, subsequent events or otherwise, unless required by applicable securities laws.

About Chorus Aviation Inc.

Chorus is a global provider of integrated regional aviation solutions.  Chorus’ vision is to deliver regional aviation to the world. Headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Chorus is comprised of Chorus Aviation Capital a leading, global lessor of regional aircraft, and Jazz Aviation and Voyageur Aviation – companies that have long histories of safe operations with excellent customer service. Chorus provides a full suite of regional aviation support services that encompasses every stage of an aircraft’s lifecycle, including aircraft acquisitions and leasing; aircraft refurbishment, engineering, modification, repurposing and preparation; contract flying; aircraft and component maintenance, disassembly, and parts provisioning.

Chorus Class A Variable Voting Shares and Class B Voting Shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the trading symbol ‘CHR’.

SOURCE Chorus Aviation Inc.