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Home arrow News arrow Business News arrow Regional News arrow SkyEurope Files For Bankruptcy, Halts Flights
SkyEurope Files For Bankruptcy, Halts Flights PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 01 September 2009
Low-cost airline SkyEurope has filed for bankruptcy and has suspended all flights, the firm said Tuesday, after struggling to restructure debt and cope with sinking revenues in the economic slump.

The small Slovakia-based carrier, which was launched in 2001 and served mainly continental Europe, had obtained a three-month creditor protection in Slovakia in June and was trying to restructure and pay its outstanding debt. 

Forrás: MTI

However, SkyEurope said a trustee appointed by a Slovak court had assessed that the carrier did not have the funds to carry on in light of reduced passenger bookings and flight revenue.

The economic slowdown has hit the airline hard and its financial woes compounded its problems, causing it to lose even more passengers because of concerns it become insolvent. Passenger traffic in July declined by 37 percent year-on-year.

"The airline had tried to set up a bridge financing facility to remedy the liquidity shortfall but this facility was not funded at the last moment," the company said in a statement.

The Vienna stock exchange said it had suspended trading in SkyEurope shares with immediate effect until further notice.

"SkyEurope expresses its utmost regret and apologies to travelers for any inconvenience and assures that until the very end all efforts have been made to carry out all flights," the company said. "An orderly procedure will be set up to minimize discomfort to the traveling public."

PLANES GROUNDED

Prague airport had said it would bar SkyEurope landings from Tuesday because it had failed to pay outstanding bills. Vienna airport already stopped servicing SkyEurope on August 15 for not paying outstanding invoices by midnight on the previous day.

SkyEurope, whose chairman, Jason Bitter, resigned in July, had said also in July that it had won a new investor who was ready to inject EUR16.5 million euros (USD$23.6 million) in fresh equity and also had got a EUR5 million bridge loan.

The company posted a net loss of EUR18.9 million in its fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, compared with a EUR15.7 million loss in the previous fiscal year.

SkyEurope had a fleet of 14 aircraft with 697 employees serving 38 destinations at the end of 2008. Its flight load factor was 72.7 percent.

Its larger competitor, the Irish budget airline Ryanair, trimmed its full-year profit forecast a month ago when it was forced to cut fares to fill aircraft.

(Reuters)

 
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