Rüdiger Wienberg, the temporary insolvency administrator for Germania Fluggesellschaft mbH, yesterday presented the status of the investor process so far to the interim creditors‘ committee. The creditors voted unanimously in favour of an investor solution. “As revealed by the company’s figures, the core part of Germania merits a bailout; this is also evidenced by the high level of interest shown by investors”, Mr Wienberg stressed. Currently over 30 parties are interested. Already more than 10 of them have signed a confidentiality agreement and are currently checking the company’s figures and data as part of due diligence. Most of the parties showing an interest are strategic investors – in other words, companies from the same sector. Mr Wienberg did not give any further details due to the fact that the negotiations with investors are subject to strict secrecy.
One possible restructuring scenario which presents itself foremost is to concentrateon lucrative routes using a smaller fleet. “Not all the Germania routes are loss-making”, Mr Wienberg said. “The insolvency procedure offers investors the possibility of taking over the viable part of the business with the profitable slots but minus the inherited liabilities.”
The crucial factor is to ensure that the airline remains operational. This requires that Germania should remain capable of keeping aircraft, crews and maintenance services ready to deploy. Mr Wienberg and his team are therefore in constant contact with the LBA (Germany’s federal aviation authority) and Fluko (Germany’s airport coordinator), the latter being responsible for allocating take-off and landing slots. “The cooperation has proved very constructive”, according to Mr Wienberg. “The good feedback from the investor process is obviously a helpful signal in this case.”
Moreover, most of the aircraft leasing companies are continuing to collaborate with the insolvent company. Twenty-two of a total twenty-seven aircraft belonging to Germania Fluggesellschaft mbH remain available and in technical terms are ready for immediate operation. “In the case of an investor solution, we could put the vast majority of flight operations into action at short notice”, says Mr Wienberg.
During the next few days, the investor process is to be expedited rapidly. “It is clear that the passing of time will not serve to improve the prospects of resuming flight operations”, according to the temporary insolvency administrator. “We are negotiating under critical time constraints.”
Germania filed for insolvency on 4 February. The interim insolvency proceedings relate to the companies Germania Fluggesellschaft mbH (1,426 employees), Germania Technik Brandenburg mbH (178 employees) and Germania Flugdienste GmbH (74 employees). The Swiss Germania Flug AG and Bulgarian Eagle are not affected by the insolvency.