Gov. Whitmer announces Michigan Strategic Fund support for Allegiant Air’s new aircraft and crew base at Bishop International Airport, 88 new jobs in Flint
Wednesday, November 10, 2021
• Project will generate private investment of $76.9 million • Airline also adding nonstop service to Phoenix • Location key to company’s strategic growth
LANSING, Mich. – Governor Gretchen Whitmer joined the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) today to announce Michigan Strategic Fund support for Allegiant’s forthcoming operational base at Flint Bishop International Airport. Allegiant, which serves more than 130 cities across the United States with nonstop flights, plans to begin base operations in Flint in mid-February 2022, generating nearly $77 million in private investment and creating 88 new high-wage jobs in Flint. Michigan was chosen for the project over a number of competing sites across the country.
“Allegiant’s investment will create good paying jobs for Flint-area residents as we continue building up Michigan’s economy and usher in a new era of prosperity together,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “We are pleased to collaborate with our local partners and support this expansion, which will help us stay laser-focused on growing our economy and will provide more convenient, affordable flight options for Michigan leisure and business travelers.”
The project is supported by a $200,000 Jobs Ready Michigan performance-based grant from the Michigan Strategic Fund.
Allegiant is one of America’s premier ultra-low-cost air carriers, offering nonstop air service to travelers from underserved small- and medium-sized communities to world-class destinations. Allegiant currently serves more than 130 cities across the U.S. and employs 75 people in Michigan.
Allegiant began operating at Bishop International Airport in 2016 and currently offers eight nonstop routes with new flights to Phoenix/Mesa starting in November 2021. In 2019, Allegiant carried nearly 197,000 passengers through Flint.
In an effort to increase route expansion and network growth, Allegiant plans to establish a new aircraft and crew base at Bishop International Airport (FNT) in Flint. The project will include housing three Airbus A320 aircraft at FNT, affording the opportunity for more nonstop flights to meet consumer demand.
“Congratulations to the team at Allegiant on your tremendous growth and success. We appreciate this continued vote of confidence in our incredible talent and competitive business climate here in Michigan,” said Quentin L. Messer, Jr., CEO of MEDC and President and Chair of the MSF Board. “Allegiant Air’s decision to expand in Flint underscores the strength of our business environment, hospitality industry and talented workforce. We thank Allegiant for expanding at Bishop International Airport and look forward to working with the company as it continues to grow and add jobs in Michigan.”
The project will foster high-wage job growth in the regional impact industry of logistics. The jobs created cover all aspects of the airline’s locally-based operations, including general and operational managers, pilots, flight attendants, aircraft maintenance technicians, engineers and station staff.
“Flint has been a great location for Allegiant, where our presence and success have grown each year,” said Keith Hansen, Allegiant’s vice president of government affairs. “It makes perfect sense to establish an aircraft and crew base in Flint, further embedding Allegiant in the community as a hometown airline. Having locally-based operations will mean opportunities for expanded hours, as well as more – and more frequent – flight offerings for local residents. We are grateful to our outstanding partners at Flint Bishop International Airport and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation for working to make this exciting step in Allegiant’s growth a reality.”
The Bishop International Airport Authority is supporting the project with facility improvements, discounted rent, and incentives for each new nonstop flight, for a total value of $1.9 million. Allegiant, which employs more than 4,200 team members across the U.S., has already begun hiring personnel to support the operations. Available positions will be posted on Allegiant’s careers website, where interested applicants can apply here.
“This announcement is the culmination of a great relationship with Allegiant, our community and the region as a whole,” said Nino Sapone, chief executive officer, Flint Bishop International Airport. “Our passengers have proven time and again how much they value the unique brand of travel that Allegiant offers. Allegiant has grown from less than 7 percent of our traffic in 2016, to over 54 percent today. It’s an amazing story of growth, commitment and partnership. Opening this base will add a variety of high paying jobs to the region, give our passengers greater access to more nonstop destinations, and the airline a home in Mid-Michigan. We’re looking forward to taking this partnership to the next level.”
“We are pleased to have partnered with Bishop International Airport and the MEDC on working to land Allegiant Air,” said Tyler Rossmaessler, executive director of the Flint & Genesee Economic Alliance. “This investment will not only make the Flint area more accessible to visitors, but it will also play a major role in priming the entire region for future long-term growth.”
About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit www.MichiganBusiness.org. For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at www.michigan.org. Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.
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