CityJet under Court protection, fighting for its survival

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The High Court of Ireland has appointed an interim examiner to CityJet, which is facing serious financial troubles.

The Irish regional airline, flying European routes with only a few ACMI contracts, sought the protection of the courts from its creditors, due to financial troubles compounded by the grounding of its aircraft, Irish media report.

“The impact of the coronavirus interrupted and adversely affected a planned merger with another airline (ed. Spanish airline Air Nostrum) and a proposed private restructuring of the company,” CityJet counsel Rossa Fanning told the court.

The airline says that it can be saved if there is a successful examinership process, a necessary step to be still in the air after the crisis. Kieran Wallace of KPMG has been appointed as the interim examiner by the High Court of Ireland.

The steps to save the airline is a restructuring of the company, cost-cutting measures and arrangements with the creditors.

While 2017 has been profitable, the last two financial years ended with losses, with debts totalling around €500 million. Among the measures discussed with creditors to find solutions, restructuring the company and merging it with Air Nostrum are pivotal.

The restart of commercial flights is still uncertain, as the airline would have to proceed step by step, aiming at making a profit in case of a successful examinership process.

Before the grounding of its 33 Bombardier CRJ900 and Avro RJ85 planes, CityJet was flying mainly for SAS, Aer Lingus and Brussels Airlines, but the contract with the latter had been cancelled recently. CityJet also owns 75 percent of Air Antwerp.

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