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Old 30th Jan 2020, 10:54
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Unfortunately you're bang on.

Originally Posted by Cyrano View Post
Here's one possible scenario to explain the "doing nothing".

Flybe launched Heathrow to Aberdeen and Edinburgh in March 2017. The press release from December 2016 is here and says, among other things:


The commitments referred to are the slot-release commitments which IAG gave. The European Commission's full analysis of the BMI takeover is here (all 196 pages) but of particular interest (in the present discussion at least) is paragraph 644 on page 148 (my emphasis below):


Flybe started operating the slots at the start of S17, i.e. 26 March 2017. Six consecutive IATA seasons therefore elapse at the end of W19/20, i.e. 28 March 2020. With effect from the start of S20 (29 March), the slots can be used for any European destination from LHR (or MOW/CAI/RUH).

It seems to me that Heathrow slots are by some margin the most valuable assets which Flybe holds (even if they are not currently on the balance sheet - which is correct in accounting terms but also very convenient at the moment). The fact that they will be limited to European routes is neither here nor there - if someone wanted to use them in future for long-haul routes, it would be possible to do a swap with a carrier holding normal unrestricted LHR slots and which is unlikely ever to want to fly long-haul from Heathrow (e.g. Air France, KLM,...).

I believe (but am open to correction) that Flybe originally received 3 weekday Heathrow slot pairs for ABZ and 4 weekday Heathrow slot pairs for EDI. The Wikipedia table linked to above shows historic Heathrow slot prices. Even if we assume a very conservative £15m per slot pair, that's still over £100m, enough even to pay the APD bill . (Factors tending to reduce the price: Flybe has fewer slots at the weekend. Factors tending to increase the price: the slots include a desirable 0800 and 0900 arrival into Heathrow.)

For Flybe and its owners to gain access to these very valuable slots, Flybe has to keep operating until 28 March 2020 (or, to be more precise, until it has flown enough of the W19/20 frequencies under the 80/20 rule to gain grandfather rights, so probably a date somewhere in the first half of March, depending on how many cancellations or off-slot operations there have been in the season so far. You can bet that someone in Flybe, and someone else in ACL, is watching and counting VERY carefully).

If Flybe fails before that, it loses the rights to the Heathrow slots, its most valuable asset. If it keeps going until after that date, Jackpot! A quick slot-transfer transaction to hand the slots over to a friendly party, and Flybe will have fulfilled its role as an organ donor (slot donor) for its owners. And if having done that it then falls over before it manages to pay all those other bills, oh well, at least the owners will have the slots with which to console themselves.

At least that's how I see it (and I hope I am wrong; I think it would be disgraceful and disingenuous were the owners to do this). By all means disagree with this scenario, but then please tell me what's wrong with the above reasoning.
Cyrano - unfortunately I completely agree with you. I see no honest intent from the connect owners other than to use flybe as a "slot donor".

They have had ample opportunity to change the organisation. This hasn't happened, nor has any intention been offered to the staff of how it will happen or any future plans apart from a name change.

I had also concluded the same outcome as you unfortunately. I feel for my ex colleagues still there and hope we are wrong. Unfortunately I can't come to any other conclusion based upon the actions of the new owners and evidence currently presented.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:21
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Ryanair's stance... as of 27th January...


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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:34
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Such a well written and professional letter from Mr O'Leary. It may carry more weight and effectiveness if it was written with less passion.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:36
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Well, I've been writing polite letters to Shapps and Leadsom without response.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:49
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Originally Posted by Schoenheit View Post
Please tell me they are keeping the planes maintained while not paying any creditors and begging for money from Government. The Q400 may be a right Tank of an aircraft except for the occasional dodgy nose-wheel but there is only so much abuse they can withstand if not receiving normal care.
A second post on different threads querying the maintenance status? An agenda?
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:52
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An agenda? Not waking up to reports of planes falling out to the sky would I suppose be labelled an agenda.
The Management Team appear to be behaving like Blackguards so I fear the worst.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:53
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It's not just connect that sat there and did nothing, French & his cronies and the COW all did exactly the same. 80% of nothing is still nothing.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:58
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Originally Posted by Schoenheit View Post
An agenda? Not waking up to reports of planes falling out to the sky would I suppose be labelled an agenda.
The Management Team appear to be behaving like Blackguards so I fear the worst.
Blackguards? So how would you describe somebody who queries the integrity of the professionals working for BE?
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 11:58
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wonder if 'dear Sajid' will reply....
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 12:02
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Originally Posted by SWBKCB View Post
Blackguards? So how would you describe somebody who queries the integrity of the professionals working for BE?
I'm not querying the integrity of the professionals in the maintenance section. I'm querying whether they are getting the parts they need to maintain the planes.
During all of hue and cry in the past I never had grounds to think that FlyBE wasn't a conscientious concern who operated professionally but struggled to make a profit partly because of poor decisions but partly because the bills which needed to be paid got paid.
With these guys my confidence is shaken.

Last edited by Schoenheit; 30th Jan 2020 at 12:02. Reason: was -> wasn't
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 12:20
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To simplify this whole mess, surely from the outset the takeover plan was for Virgin to get the valuable LHR slots, Stobart to get some extra Aircraft type they currently already use (hence why they are in on the deal) and for Cyrus to get a cash return (behind closed doors recieved from both parties) I genuinely don't see any other reason as to why this whole "Deal" was first implemented.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 12:29
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Unofficially perhaps but officially the plan was to properly finance FlyBE and run it as a going concern...that was justification to burn the shareholders and protect other stakeholders.
Stakeholders usually include the public, government, business who do business with it.
The public in the regions now have had the possibility of connecting flights through LHR removed.
It is reported in the press that their creditors in the Airports aren't being paid
The government is foregoing/stalling APD and is being coerced to provide a loan on commercial terms with no assets on which the loan can be secured.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 14:16
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Originally Posted by Schoenheit View Post
Unofficially perhaps but officially the plan was to properly finance FlyBE and run it as a going concern...that was justification to burn the shareholders and protect other stakeholders.
Stakeholders usually include the public, government, business who do business with it.
The public in the regions now have had the possibility of connecting flights through LHR removed.
It is reported in the press that their creditors in the Airports aren't being paid
The government is foregoing/stalling APD and is being coerced to provide a loan on commercial terms with no assets on which the loan can be secured.
The loan is reportedly being secured on assets like aircraft and engines. And I'd expect the Heathrow slots to be included in the deal.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 14:19
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Back in 2018 at the depths of their troubles they had already got loans on the basis of one out of the few airframes they owned. They don't have enough clapped out decade old Q400s to get loans.

quote:
When asked for a comment on the current state of negotiations and the speculation that a deal was imminent, a rather terse "Flybe doesn’t comment on these matters." was all we were given, which doesn't clarify the muddy waters. The firm has however been rather busy scrubbing around for various sources of financing in the last two weeks which has included getting another loan or mortgage on one of its Bombardier Q400 turboprop aircraft - G-JEDW that netted £5 million ($6.35million). The sale of a hanger at Exeter Airport (EXT), which Flybe will now lease back raised a further £5 million of much-needed funds. The company is also in dispute with Monarch Aircraft Engineering for maintenance contracts at Birmingham and Manchester, which may save the carrier some cash, although it will have to do all the maintenance itself, which might negate any cost savings.

Last edited by Schoenheit; 30th Jan 2020 at 14:27. Reason: corrected details.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 14:40
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Originally Posted by PDXCWL45 View Post
The loan is reportedly being secured on assets like aircraft and engines. And I'd expect the Heathrow slots to be included in the deal.
Do Flybe own the aircraft? If not and they are leased as I expect, then itís not their asset to be secured against.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 15:03
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Originally Posted by Atlantic Explorer View Post
Do Flybe own the aircraft? If not and they are leased as I expect, then itís not their asset to be secured against.
In the article I read, they have already taken out a loan secured against engines and buildings.

https://www.cityam.com/flybe-looks-f...saves-airline/
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 15:07
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and still the obvious question is why the wealthy investors aren't providing capital rather than shouldering the company with additional debt at punitive rates of interest. The "invest" in investor is seemingly lost on them.
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 15:15
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Originally Posted by Schoenheit View Post
and still the obvious question is why the wealthy investors aren't providing capital rather than shouldering the company with additional debt at punitive rates of interest. The "invest" in investor is seemingly lost on them.
Simple, because they'd rather asset strip:

A cynic might say that this has always been the plan of its new billionaire owners: let the airline go bankrupt; seize its assets and airport slots in Gatwick and Heathrow (worth millions); and avoid having to pay out pensions, redundancies and expensive aircraft leases.
https://www.socialist.net/flybe-cris...ax-holiday.htm
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 15:25
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Originally Posted by Schoenheit View Post
Please tell me they are keeping the planes maintained while not paying any creditors and begging for money from Government. The Q400 may be a right Tank of an aircraft except for the occasional dodgy nose-wheel but there is only so much abuse they can withstand if not receiving normal care.



Rest assured the turkey props are receiving their normal care however in a effort to reduce costs i hear Kwik Fit aviation services are now the contacted maintenance provider .
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Old 30th Jan 2020, 15:28
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Originally Posted by Brigantee View Post
Rest assured the turkey props are receiving their normal care however in a effort to reduce costs i hear Kwik Fit aviation services are now the contacted maintenance provider .
You might be facetious here but is there any truth to this. Are vacant positions in the hangers being back-filled? These planes are not getting any younger.
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