DALLAS – After collapsing for a second time on January 27, the administrators for UK regional Flybe (BE) have applied for a temporary operating licence.
The application to the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) would allow the airline to restructure and potentially recommence operations. This is the first time the regulator has ever received such a request from a defunct UK airline.
A spokesperson for the CAA said, “Flybe’s administrators have applied for a temporary operator’s licence. If approved, it would allow the administrators to start the process of restructuring the business. The UK Civil Aviation Authority has not yet made a decision on whether to grant a temporary licence.
“Flybe’s licence currently remains suspended in accordance with the undertakings given by the administrators.”
Interpath Advisory, BE’s administrators, revealed that they intended to maintain a scaled-back element of Flybe’s operations as part of a strategy to rescue the airline.
At the weekend, reports emerged that the Lufthansa (LH) and Air France-KLM (AF/KL) airline groups were interested in taking over the carrier. However, it is believed that this is to obtain its lucrative London Heathrow slot pairs, which, Interpath said, will only be sold as part of the business.
These were held originally by British Midland (BD) before its takeover by British Airways (BA) in 2012. They were subsequently granted to Flybe as part of the conditions of the BD takeover imposed by competition regulators.
BE was reportedly losing up to £5m per month before ceasing operations and has since blamed the late delivery of aircraft and high cancellation rates as the primary reason for its demise.
Featured Image: The new Flybe had bases at Birmingham (BHX) and George Best Belfast City (BHD) Airports. Photo: George Best Belfast City Airport.