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A WOW Air Airbus A321neo (photo: Airbus)

Mystery crowdfunding to resurrect WOW

Ostensibly independent of the recent efforts by the former founder to bring back WOW, this new effort is an appeal to all Icelanders.

A new crowdfunding site, hluthafi.com, has gone online aiming to involve Icelanders in fundraising to bring back WOW air, the low-cost carrier that went bankrupt late last month with huge job losses.

The initiative comes just days after the former chief executive and founder Skúli Mogensen revealed that he was also planning to resurrect the airline.

He claims he is in no way connected to the crowdfunding effort but is following it closely, the broadcasting company RÚV reports.

A statement on the newly launched site says it is being run by a group of former WOW air customers who understand the importance of a strong low-cost carrier in Iceland.

The group explains that tourism “has stimulated economic growth and increased quality of life in recent years and we want to make sure that quality remains”.

And if WOW air cannot be brought back, then the group wants to help finance another budget airline in Iceland instead.

Even small amounts of money will contribute to the effort, the group tells the Icelandic public and businesses, and a new carrier could be launched within the next 90 days.

Carpenter spokesman
The site is anonymous, but a carpenter named Friðrik Atli Guðmundsson represented the group in a recent interview with the online newspaper Vísir.

He stressed that the group wants to remain anonymous and hopes that “the public and the media respect our privacy”.

“We are former clients of WOW air and other airlines,” the Icelandic-language site declares. “We know that if competition diminishes […] we will lose in the long run.”

“We believe that if Skúli and his best people can rebuild WOW air then we as individuals in this country should join in to help. Therefore, we encourage individuals and businesses to contribute small share capital through the masses and ensure WOW air operations in the future.”

It continues: “We believe that if we collect at least 10-20,000 shareholders, it is best to create a private limited liability company that would invest in WOW air or a new low-cost airline.”

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