Consortium lands troubled airline for £2.8m

Flybe

Struggling regional airline Flybe has completed the sale of its assets to a consortium of buyers which includes logistics firm Stobart Group.

Flybe confirmed it has sold its assets and operations for £2.8m to Connect Airways.

The consortium includes Virgin Atlantic, Cumbria based Stobart Group and hedge fund Cyrus Capital.

The news comes just a week after it was announced Stobart Group had won its legal battle with former chief executive Andrew Tinkler.

Mr Tinkler had attempted to oust Stobart Group chairman Iain Ferguson and had also put in a counter offer for Flybe.

US airline Mesa had tabled a last-minute rescue deal that would see it inject £65m in new equity at roughly 4.5p per share.

However, the Exeter-based airline decided to accept Connect Airways offer hours ahead of today’s deadline.

A statement was made to the Stock Market this morning.

The statement said: “Flybe’s assets and operations are now owned by Connect Airways and Flybe flights continue to operate as normal.

“Following the completion of the sale under the SPA, Flybe Group plc is now a non-trading entity with no subsidiaries and no material assets other than the limited cash received under the SPA, which is required to cover transaction, residual and rundown costs of the company.

“It is not anticipated that after meeting these costs there would be any remaining funds available for distribution to shareholders.

“The separate recommended cash offer by Connect Airways announced on 11 January 2019, under which it is proposed that Connect Airways will acquire the entire issued and to be issued share capital of the company by means of a scheme of arrangement (the “Scheme”), remains conditional on the approval of the scheme by Flybe shareholders at the court meeting and the passing of the special resolution at the general meeting called in connection with the Scheme, the satisfaction or waiver of the other conditions to the Scheme and the approval of the Court.

“The Flybe directors strongly advise shareholders to vote in favour of the scheme at the shareholder meetings on 4 March 2019.”

As outlined in the Scheme document dated 7 February 2019, if the Scheme is approved, application will be made to the Financial Conduct Authority for the cancellation of the standard listing of the Flybe shares on the Official List and to the London Stock Exchange for the cancellation of the admission to trading of Flybe shares on London Stock Exchange’s Main Market for listed securities.

“It is expected that such de-listing and cancellation of admission to trading would take effect at or shortly after the Scheme effective date, expected to be 11 March 2019.

“As previously announced, if the Scheme is not approved, the Flybe directors intend to take steps to wind-up Flybe Group plc.

“Flybe will therefore shortly apply to the Financial Conduct Authority and the London Stock Exchange respectively requesting the cancellation of listing of the Company’s shares on the Official List and the cancellation of admission to trading of the Company’s shares on London Stock Exchange’s Main Market for listed securities.”

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