Virgin Australia’s apparent gamble to unload has taken a new turn even in the current financial and global situation of a pandemic as the company quoted that they are in final talks about selling with two final contenders. Weeks before as the pandemic went its course, Virgin Australia became the first major international airliner to buckle under the economic strain of the pandemic and decided to abandon ship.
However, before selling rights of the airlines the executives fought hard to stay afloat. The airlines was in debt of more than AUS $5 billion ($3.2 billion) and even appealed for a monetarism of AUS $1.4 billion, a request which was stifled.
Administrator Vaughan Strawbridge from accounting firm Deloitte quoted on Tuesday that two private equity firms Bain Capital and Cyrus Capital Partners were shortlisted from an initial bidding pool of five bidders.
He said both US-based investment houses were “well-funded, have deep aviation experience, and they see real value in the business and its future”.
“We will now spend the coming weeks facilitating in-depth bidder engagement with the stakeholders of the business and work closely with both preferred bidders in the lead up to binding final offers being received,” Strawbridge added.
The airline will continue to operate in a limited manner and continue to bring stranded across the world through a series of domestic routes and government-backed flights. Before the sellout was introduced, around 1,000 staff members were made redundant as the carrier underwent a voluntary administration status, while 8,000 staff members were furloughed, which puts the carrier’s current staff strength at just a 1,000.
While there is no current word on the demise of the remaining staffers, reports say that a final bidder will be made the sole owner by June 30.