Avianca S.A. (acronym in Spanish formerly for Aerovías Nacionales de Colombia S.A. (National Airways of Colombia), currently Aerovías del Continente Americano S.A. (Airways of the American Continent)) is the flag carrier airline of Colombia since December 5, 1919 when it was initially registered under the name SCADTA.
It is headquartered in Bogotá, D.C. with its main hub at the El Dorado International Airport. Avianca is also a trademark comprising a group of seven independently IATA-coded and -owned Latin American airlines, whose operations are combined to function as one airline using a code sharing system. Avianca is the largest airline in Colombia and second one in Latin America: Avianca together with their subsidiaries has the most extensive network of destinations in Latin America and one of the largest and most modern aircraft fleets on the continent. It is wholly owned by Avianca Holdings S.A., a Latin American holding company established in Panama and specializing in air transport. The company is part of the Synergy Group and is listed in the Colombia Stock Exchange.
On October 7, 2009, it was announced that Avianca would merge with TACA. In 2009 Avianca reached their 90th anniversary and is the world's second oldest airline still in operation (behind KLM); Avianca is the oldest continuously operating airline in the Western Hemisphere.
On June 21, 2012, Avianca was introduced as an official member of Star Alliance after a process that lasted for around 18 months since their initial announcement of being invited in joining the Alliance.