Flybmi has suddenly collapsed. All flights have been cancelled and FAs ordered home. The UK-based regional carrier chiefly blames Brexit for its demise.
Flybmi served 23 destinations in Europe with a fleet of 17 Embraer regional jets.
Here’s the full announcement from Flybmi, whose website has been transformed to a press release about the carrier’s collapse:
It is with a heavy heart that we have made this unavoidable announcement today. The airline has faced several difficulties, including recent spikes in fuel and carbon costs, the latter arising from the EU’s recent decision to exclude UK airlines from full participation in the Emissions Trading Scheme.
These issues have undermined efforts to move the airline into profit. Current trading and future prospects have also been seriously affected by the uncertainty created by the Brexit process, which has led to our inability to secure valuable flying contracts in Europe and lack of confidence around bmi’s ability to continue flying between destinations in Europe. Additionally, our situation mirrors wider difficulties in the regional airline industry which have been well documented.
Against this background, it has become impossible for the airline’s shareholders to continue their extensive programme of funding into the business, despite investment totalling over £40m in the last six years. We sincerely regret that this course of action has become the only option open to us, but the challenges, particularly those created by Brexit, have proven to be insurmountable.
Our employees have worked extremely hard over the last few years and we would like to thank them for their dedication to the company, as well as all our loyal customers who have flown with us over the last 6 years.
- Higher fuel and carbon costs have led to losses
- Threat of Brexit has led to an inability to secure or renew key contacts
- There is no hope
If you find yourself with a a now worthless ticket, Flybmi advises how you may be able to request a refund:
Customers with bookings should contact their bank or payment card issuer to initiate the process of obtaining a refund. If Customers have booked through Lufthansa, Brussels Airlines or another airline or code partner or a booking agent Customers should contact them directly. Customers who have travel insurance should contact their travel insurance provider to understand if they are eligible to claim for cancelled flights and the procedure for doing so.
Thus, another airline bites the dust. For the bmi brand, it is like a second death…I’ll write more on that next week.
Another sad day for aviation in Europe.
I think you meant to say “inability” in your second bullet.
This Brexit issue sure has long tentacles.
The Bond family have many high value cars including several Aston Martin classics. Maybe they should sell them to pay off some of the debts of the airlinr
And as there’s confusion over in the UK as to who has gone bust, just to reiterate that it’s FlyBMI that’s gone under and NOT FlyBe.
Flybmi was the regional arm of British Midland that was spun off by IAG after the acquisition of BMI in 2012. They were initially called BMI Regional but recently rebranded themselves Flybmi.
FlyBe is the airline that is being sold to a consortium including Virgin Atlantic. They are still operating as usual, and the (sale) transaction is expected to close on 22/23 February.
This was a long time coming. LH owned BMI and trolled BA for years with the slots. I still miss BMI and, especially, their roomy seats in C. But they knew there was no real future in serving the Heathrow – Baku or Heathrow – Addis routes. FlyBMI was left with an already too narrow of a market niche to survive.
Not really screwed by Brexit so much as by BA. And decades in the making, rather than months, having been left with scraps and an unsustainable business model in the wake of that predatory , take-no-prisoners ,behemoth .
“I’ll write more on that next week.”