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Primera Air Headed For Bankruptcy

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Primera Air Headed For Bankruptcy

Primera Air bankrupt

Photo: Valentin Hintikka

Primera Air and Prime Air Scandinavia, part of Primera Travel Group, are headed for bankruptcy, Vísir reports. The two companies will apply for suspensions of payment tomorrow. All of Primera's staff has been sacked. They were notified of this in an e-mail today, according to Vísir's sources.

The e-mail states that late deliveries for the company's new Airbus planes, with the following delays and flight cancellations, are among the factors that brought the company down. The owners have been trying unsuccessfully to refinance the company in the last months.

The company is now working to transfer all of Primera's staff, which are situated in a number of Primera destinations, to their homes. Employees situated in Riga were told of the proceedings in a meeting today. Primera's owners will release a report at midnight, Riga time, with further information.

Primera Air Group aircraft has flown from Iceland with an air operating certificate (AOC) from Latvia. The company flew for Icelandic travel agencies, while the flight attendants are largely from Latvia. Two Icelanders spearhead the group, president and owner Andri Már Ingólfsson, and CEO Hrafn Þorgeirsson. The airline was formed by 2009 by the Icelandic based Primera Travel Group.

Below is the e-mail sent out to all Primera Air staff today:

Dear colleagues, It is with great regret I am reaching out to you all this dark day. We have just been informed that both Primera Air Nordic and Primera Air Scandinavia will file for bankruptcy tomorrow October 2, 2018. Currently flights are operated as normally and OCC, Crewing and Travel are working on arranging travel home for crews who happen to be on outstations. Reasons I am sure are many but very high cost for the aircraft with corrosion last year as well as the delays of our new Airbuses lead to too high costs for wet lease and cancellations which in the end became too much for the airlines. Our owner was working on securing financing but was not able to in the end. This is what was stated during today’s staff meeting in the Riga office. All the staff in the Riga office have been informed but official information will not be sent out until midnight by our owner. I understand it is difficult but please keep this to yourself if you can until after the official notification from the owner. In fact, I am not even authorized to send this email but I think it is the right thing to do for all of you out there on the line. You deserve to know. I will continue to be available on phone and email. God knows it has not been without its challenges but thanks to all of you great colleagues it has been a real honour to be at the controls of the flight ops department the past 7 years. We got the permits, we flew the flights, we got good reviews from the passengers. In other words, we fulfilled our part of the mission. The financial and commercial aspects we could not influence. Thank you all for the past years and take good care of you out there.

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