Flybe, a UK-based regional airline, has ceased trading and canceled all flights effective January 28th, 2023, after entering administration. The Birmingham-based airline had been serving 10 airports in the UK as well as international destinations Amsterdam and Geneva. The High Court appointed David Pike and Mike Pink of insolvency firm Interpath Advisory as the joint administrators of Flybe Limited.
The carrier’s website issued a statement advising passengers who were expecting to travel not to go to the airport, as they would not arrange alternative flights. David Pike, one of the joint administrators, expressed his condolences for the employees who had put so much effort into making Flybe a success after its relaunch in April 2022. He stated that it was a real setback for the UK’s regional connectivity at a time when infrastructure and leveling up is a top priority.
Pike stated that the company had faced several setbacks since its relaunch, including the late delivery of 17 aircraft, which severely impacted the airline’s capacity and competitiveness. This resulted in significant financial losses and a cash drain for the business. Despite the enormous efforts made by the directors and stakeholders to find new investors or owners in recent months, the aviation sector is still adjusting to the new normal following the pandemic, and the timing was not right for the process to reach a successful conclusion.
Paul Smith, Consumer Director of the UK Civil Aviation Authority, commented on Flybe’s decision to cease trading. He stated that seeing an airline enter administration was always sad and expressed sympathy for the affected employees and customers. He urged passengers who had planned to fly with Flybe not to go to the airport since all flights had been canceled.
Flybe had previously failed in March 2020, with its brand and assets sold to Thyme Opco, a business linked to hedge fund Cyrus Capital. The airline’s latest incarnation began commercial operations in April 2022 and scheduled to offer 292 flights across 17 routes in the week commencing January 30th, 2023. Despite the disappointment of Flybe’s sudden cessation of operations, some of the destinations served by Flybe from the Northern Ireland airport are available with other carriers.