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Source is Times newspaper Quote: Not everyone understands how commercial loans work. So how lucky Mark Anderson can explain. The Flybe boss is trying to prise £100 million out of the government. And all via Boris Johnson’s new “levelling up” policy: one aimed, apparently, at keeping the bank accounts of the airline’s owners up to the levels they like.
Still, don’t accuse Mr Anderson of demanding any sweetheart terms for a business owned by the billionaires behind Virgin Atlantic — Sir Richard Branson and Delta Air Lines — plus New York hedge fund Cyrus Capital and Stobart. As he told Flybe staff: “We are in conversation with the government around a financial loan — a loan, not a bailout — a commercial loan, but that is the same as any loan we’d take from any bank.”
Really? So why not talk to a bank, then? Short answer: because after the stunts that Flybe’s owners have pulled with its assets, they’d struggle to get a commercial loan. As Companies House filings show, there’s almost zero security left.
Having bought the assets for just £2.8 million last February, one of the owners’ first moves was to strike a deal with Global Loans Agency Services: a trustee for their stakes that takes security over certain assets. So it’s a sort of middleman between Flybe’s owners and its assets. Or at least those that can’t fly off: lessors already had security over most of the 67 turboprop planes.
The rest of the assets, including buildings, aircraft engines and receivables, then look to have been divvied up between the owners. Filings show that Flybe’s holding company — Connect Airways — is both “chargors” and “guarantors” for asset deals. Indeed, the document says: “Each chargor shall attach to a visible part of each item of specified equipment owned by it and with a value in excess of £10,000 . . . a clear and distinctive label.”
The upshot? Well, should Flybe go bust, the owners have a charge over specific assets: enough, maybe, to eliminate any losses. True, they claim to have injected £110 million. But it’s questionable how much of that was cash. Stobart’s £45 million, say, was mainly its regional airline and aircraft-leasing wing, which experts reckon were worth nothing like that. To boot, by using Global Loans, the owners avoid a bunfight over any future carve-up.
On top came the owners’ wheeze with Flybe’s Heathrow slots. They switched Newquay flights under the taxpayer-funded “public service obligation” regime to Gatwick: a dodge, potentially to the benefit of Virgin Atlantic, that unlocked an estimated £60 million of value.
And now, on top of a £10 million holiday on air passenger duty, they want a £100 million taxpayer loan. They can afford to inject fresh equity. Without that, no bank would lend to a loss-making airline whose wealthy owners were up to these sorts of capers. And neither should the government. Indeed, the money would be far better spent subsidising essential routes. Not minted owners intent on looking after thems
Just read[Times] that the consortium, who took over last year secured their investment with Flybe assets - so their 'injection of cash' was nothing more than more borrowing . Disgraceful and as many predicted -so why did'nt the previous bod do that?
not like mikey to chuck poo in the turbo prop..lol. I`ve got a hatful of Ryanair so have some sympathy but they would not be interested in the routes so why rock the boat. When the money runs out again perhaps a full enquiry will be held. Get the old board in the dock..
You have to ask yourself, if the government could review/cut APD and defer the outstanding £100m or whatever, would this have been the lifeline Flybe needed before shareholders were swindled by the board? Would seem Branson and his team of crones haven't coughed up, instead... they're using the tax money as a loan.
Passenger duty is paid by customers, it’s a tax, and as a customer of Flybe (and ffs x-shareholder) I expect any taxes I’ve paid on a ticket should go to the Government not to prop up Virgin and Stobart. This shows how badly Flybe in run. Now they know the government won’t let it go bust, IMO they will be back for more.
With your unrivalled ability to observe and report the non-existent whilst completely getting your predictions wrong at an unparalleled rate means Flybe probably has a great future ahead of them. Life is about winners and losers, nothing more and nothing less, the trick is to move on when you fail do waste your time moaning and posting like an adolescent.
Too little too late for the shareholders, and a shame for the rest of the airlines who have been left to go under without the support if the government, the TUI staff must be properly miffed!
Also a shame for the tax payer who has seen their taxes wasted on this failed business, delaying the inevitable outcome a little longer.
As for stationhouse, sounds likes hes one of the unskilled losers left behind at Flymaybe, lucky for him hes not got to head down the job centre - yet! Thanks for the 23 posts of utter dross, shame you've not been around for the last few years like some of us.
No surprise to hear that no compensation is being handed out for those who lost their pennies in last years fiasco - as always, Smithy told ya so!