KIWI International Air Lines Captain Wing
Newark, NJ 1992-1999
Under the name KIWI Acquisition Group, the airline raised $2,000,000 from mostly Eastern Airlines former pilots at $50,000 apiece. The airline was named after the flightless bird of New Zealand to reflect its founding by unemployed pilots from defunct airlines. KIWI first flew on September 21, 1992 using two refurbished 727-200s and then started to grow. KIWI ran into problems with the FAA over pilot training and its operation was reduced to 11 aircraft on June 11, 1996. The airline filed for bankruptcy on September 30, 1996. Financing was recevied and the operation resumed scheduled flying on January 20, 1997 and the airline exited bankruptcy on July 21, 1997. By the end of 1998, KIWI had an operating loss of $19.8 million and a net loss of $20.6 million. As of March 1999, KIWI was a charter carrier with four leased jets flying to six cities. On March 23, 1999, the airline filed for bankruptcy and the following day the FAA revoked its certificate after finding irregularities in a safety audit.