|Commenced operations||March 2012|
|Headquarters||Asturias Airport, Castrillón, Spain (registered office)|
Volotea was established by Alaeo S.L. from Barcelona, a company created by former Vueling founders, Carlos Muñoz and Lázaro Ros. The name "Volotea" originates from the Spanish verb "revolotear," meaning "to fly around." It commenced operations on 5 April 2012, from Venice Marco Polo Airport.
The company is backed by three private-equity funds, two of them from Europe (Axis Participaciones Empresariales and Corpfin Capital) and a third from the United States (CCMP Capital), whose chairman, Greg Brenneman, was one-time President and COO of the US airline Continental Airlines, and also chairs Volotea's board. The company raised over EUR50m before operations began. US CCMP Capital Partners holds 49% of voting rights; Axis and Corpfin Capital 25%; and Muñoz and Ros 26% along with relatives: this ownership has existed since foundation, but it could change before an initial public offering before 2021-2022.
After studying the Bombardier CRJ1000 and the Embraer E-195 in 2011, Volotea selected the Boeing 717 after Southwest Airlines acquired AirTran and replaced its 717 fleet. Boeing announced on 15 February 2012 that it had signed a long-term lease deal with Volotea for an undisclosed number of Boeing 717 aircraft. In March 2015, it was announced that Volotea would receive a further four 717s from Blue1. However, in November 2015, Volotea announced plans to phase out its 717 fleet over the next few years and replace it with Airbus A320 family aircraft.
Volotea opened 90 routes in its first year, of which 40 were closed within two years; it operated almost 300 routes in summer 2018 including 220 openings, and this could double to at least 500-600 across Europe. Volotea has been profitable since 2014, a turnover of EUR360 million ($431 million) is expected in 2018 after $347M in 2017, carrying 5.7 to 6 million passengers, 50% being leisure travellers, 35% visiting friends and relatives, and 15% business travellers.
Due to the 2017-18 Spanish constitutional crisis, in 2017 Volotea changed the headquarters to Asturias Airport, Castrillon, Asturias, Spain. As of June 2018, the airline has carried 18 million passengers since beginning operations in 2012.
The focus of Volotea's route network is on destinations around the European side of the Mediterranean coast as well as Western and Southern Europe. As of May 2018, Volotea serves metropolitan and leisure destinations mainly in Spain, France, Italy and Greece with destinations in Austria, Croatia, Czechia, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, and Portugal. Volotea served its first African destination (Tangier, Morocco) on 5 April 2019.
Media related to Volotea at Wikimedia Commons