TORONTO, Feb 29 (Reuters) - Privately held Porter Airlines will announce strategic partnerships in 2012 as it seeks growth against bigger rivals Air Canada and WestJet Airlines Ltd, its chief executive told Reuters on Wednesday.
The partnerships, which would include interline and code share agreements with U.S. and international carriers, follow talks with about six carriers that began in late September, said CEO Robert Deluce.
"I think there's good opportunity particularly from some of our U.S. hub cities: Boston, New York, Chicago, perhaps even Montreal, we'll see where it leads us," Deluce said.
Porter, which has expanded rapidly since it began operating in 2006, is best known for its flights to and from Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, located on an island in Lake Ontario close to Toronto's financial center.
The carrier, which last year shelved plans for an initial public offering due to unfavorable market conditions, is well-funded for the next 18 to 24 months, Deluce said.
"Our capital levels are sufficient now to see us through any anticipated growth that we have on our shorter term horizon. Mid to long term, going and doing an additional raise is probably a likely occurrence, but we're going to do it when conditions are right, when the deal's right."