Troubled airline Flybe puts itself up for sale

Flybe up for sale weeks after profit warning

Nov 14 (Reuters) - British regional airline Flybe Group Plc said on Wednesday it was in talks with potential buyers, as it grapples with higher fuel costs, lower demand and a weak British pound, sending its shares up as much as 44 percent in early trading.

A Flybe plane prepares to take off in rainy conditions at Leeds Bradford Airport.

Flybe is reported to have put itself up for sale less than a month after issuing a dramatic profit warning.

The board has appointed Evercore as its financial adviser to assist it with this review.

Stobart Group is believed to be one potential suitor, the airline announced its intention to buy Flybe earlier this year but abandoned a bid at the time.

It serves around eight million passengers a year, but has been struggling to recover from a costly IT overhaul and has been trying to reduce costs.

Vikings-Bears game to pit two top five defenses against each other
Every week you are going to get new plays, you are going to get new formations, you are going to get new personnel groups. In the past two games, Chicago has rushed for a meager 59 yards per game on 2.5 yards per carry.

For the six months to 30 September, pre-tax profits fell by 54% to £7.4m and revenues slipped by 2.4% to £419.2m.

"In line with our strategy, we reduced seat capacity in the first half by 9.0% delivering a 7.2% increase in revenue per seat".

However, the group's capacity had been reduced by 9% while net debt increased to £82.1mln from £59.1mln at the end of a year ago, which the company blamed on "the seasonality of cash and adverse sterling movements".

Since September, the company's shares have fallen by nearly 75 per cent. Continued improvements are being seen into quarter three which demonstrates the popularity of Flybe for our customers, ' said Christine Ourmières-Widener, Chief Executive Officer.

"We are responding to this by reviewing every aspect of our business, especially further capacity reduction, cash management and cost savings".

Reporting Flybe's interim results, auditors PwC also warned that there was "significant doubt about the Group's ability to continue as a going concern", due to uncertainty surrounding credit card acquirers demanding higher cash collateral.

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