Flybe at the point of no return as rescue talks fail

The regional airline Flybe, which entered administration last month, will be shut down after all efforts to find a rescuer for the company were unsuccessful.

According to media gossip, Air France-KLM and the German airline Lufthansa were among the potential bidders with whom Interpath Advisory, the insolvency practitioner, had been in talks.

The decision was conveyed to the 45 remaining Flybe staff on Wednesday.

According to sources familiar with the process, “use it or lose it” regulations governing take-off and landing slots have contributed to making a sale of the company too challenging to accomplish.

A little-known investor with little prior experience controlling aviation companies, Cyrus Capital, bought Flybe out of administration less than a year ago, leading to its recent relaunch.

The company, which was one of Europe’s largest regional airlines at one point, was listed on the London Stock Exchange until 2019, when it was sold to a venture funded by Virgin Atlantic Airways.

Flybe, with its headquarters in Exeter, provided connections for travellers travelling to and from underserved UK locations in the south-west, the Midlands, and Scotland.

It first went bankrupt as the epidemic started to spread in the beginning of 2020.

Up to its most recent run-in with the law, Flybe operated flights to and from airports like Heathrow and Schiphol in Amsterdam.

Thousands of passengers were impacted by the collapse last month, even though Flybe was a far smaller company than it had been in 2020 when it was owned by Cyrus Capital.

Within hours of Interpath’s hiring, more than 200 workers were laid off.

According to an insider, difficulties relating to the attitude of European authorities towards a temporary operating permit for Flybe that would have been provided by the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority also played a role in the sale’s impediment.

It is now anticipated that the corporation will be shut down, and that negotiations will take place between Interpath and aircraft lessors.

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