Saturday, November 19, 2016

Adria faces fresh hurdles


Adria Airways is facing fresh financial problems according to reports by Slovenian media, just eight months after the airline was purchased by the German-run 4K Invest. According to documentation obtained by the "Siol" portal, the Slovenian carrier has recorded a three million euro loss during the first three quarters of the year. While the loss is somewhat smaller to that of the same period in 2015, it is unclear how the new management will deliver on its promise to swing Adria back to profit within the first year of its takeover. Furthermore, the portal states that Adria has sold its 55-year-old brand name and is now renting it instead, however, this has not been verified. In addition, the company has almost no assets left, after most were sold in the previous years in an attempt to cover losses. The carrier recently sold a Bombardier CRJ200 aircraft, which was the last remaining jet it still owned.

Adria has refused to comment on any of the latest revelations. However, the Slovenian Civil Aviation Agency said in a statement, "According to the latest data, Adria Airways' financial position is sustainable and its operations are under no threat in the short-term. In September, Adria presented us with a set of measures (some of which have already been implemented and have proven effective) in order to boost its capital". It is the second time in months that Adria's financial performance has come under scrutiny. In July, CEO Arno Schuster was forced to defend the company's results. "Bankruptcy, which is being speculated by some, is not in sight. We did suspend some routes, such as Stockholm and Berlin, as well as Istanbul, but we have introduced new flights from various Polish cities, as well as from Pristina and Tirana", Mr Schuster said at the time.

Since transforming Adria from a joint stock company into a limited liability company late last month, the airline's share capital has declined from 7.6 million euros to just one million euros. 4K Invest took over the Slovenian carrier with a pledge to make it profitable by the end of the year and plans to grow in a number of markets including Estonia through its cooperation with the Estonian airline Nordica. "We look quite positively into this year, expecting good results. Adria's strategy seems like a good fit for a regional carrier. Adria Airways will make good connections available for business customers and offer attractive ticket prices for tourists. It will continue to serve the markets of Slovenia, Albania, Kosovo and Macedonia, connecting these countries with the world through the Star Alliance network. It intends also to grow in Estonia, a new market it entered in November 2015", Mr Schuster said in March. However, the Slovenian airline will end its cooperation with Nordica today. No reason has been given for the abrupt severing of ties between the two.

62 comments:

  1. How much money has been thrown into this airline over the last 5 years ? It went through restructuring for several years which now turns out to have been an epic fail.

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  2. I hear LJU is already talking to a lot of airlines to cover Adria routes in case of bankruptcy.

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    1. Yes, Ryanair and Vueling but it's very early "talks".

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    2. Dont think LJU will see all to many lowcosts. It has basically been taken over by LH

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    3. I would say there is great potential for Ryan to start FRA-LJU route next year as they will open a base in FRA next summer. That would also imply that Adria is great trouble if it does materialise.

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  3. Good picture....it s getting dark around JP. Feel sorry for all those employees who delivered hard work all those years, some even all those decades
    Guess the story is soon over. LH OS LX SN will take over. Maybe a LCC opening 1-2 routes
    55 years of regional aviation history going to an end :(

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    1. I agree.. It is so sad... :(

      Haplek

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  4. How does it work when you sell your brand name? Who would have even bought it?

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    1. Brand has been sold to the ovner of 4K an than leased back. It is just a financial spin off

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    2. Virgin Atlantic is doing the same, Richard Branson owns the Virgin brand and keeps renting it to all "his" companies.

      Aside from only being the financial spin off, it may also be a clear signal that Adria is finished as we know it and that the owners are preparing for the shutdown, taking aside the only remaining asset worth something, the brand.

      Regards,
      Eighz

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    3. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

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  5. So they recorded a loss of €3 million after selling one of their CRJ 200 and after selling their brand?

    That can only mean that the actual loss is around €3.5 million which is not that good for an airline their size.

    Winter is here and I don't see how they will make it. I was hoping YM would go bankrupt as well but seems that they will milk JU and the Serbian market until they find a solution to their problems.

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    1. It seems the milking would be mutually beneficial. YM demise would open space for other carriers to step in (i.e. Wizz - Montenegro would do the same as Macedonia, air travel is vital to its tourism aspirations). This way, market remains a duopoly, Montenegro has its name written on a bunch of planes and Air Serbia is leading the Mimosa Festival.

      Pozdrav,
      Eight

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    2. Of course but at the end of the day it's the customer that is at a loss. YM is on life support and if the market was liberalized the number of passengers would most likely double. Just look at all the people that take a bus or a train to go to MNE.

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    3. Nemjee, how can they milk the "Serbian market" when they don't operate from Serbia to a third country? YM operate routes only out of Montenegro and if a passenger's origin or destination point is in Montenegro then that's Montenegrin market, not Serbian.

      In any case, would you not agree that an airline's contribution to a country's economy might be greater than it's financial losses? After all, that's what we keep hearing about the contribution of JU to Serbia's economy, so surely the same logic applies to Montenegro (employment that it creates in the country, tax on their incomes, supply chain businesses, and so forth).

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    4. It's milking the Serbian market because every time they are in a catastrophic situation they turn to us hoping Serbia and its market would save them. There were at least three or four such instances in the past ten years.
      Just like now, they are about to collapse under the weight of their own debt so they decide to strike a code-share deal with JU despite having refused to do so just two, three years ago when Air Serbia offered it.

      Also, they don't fly from Serbia to the West because they lost that right about a decade ago. If they could they would have done it, they even applied for INI-ZRH rights but thank God the Swiss authorities turned them down.

      Like I said, YM is a parasite and they shouldn't be around.

      You can't seriously compare JU to YM. Air Serbia got state aid so as to get things moving after the airline was mismanaged for the past two, three decades. They needed money to transition from a post-Communist failing business venture to a modern airline that could remain competitive.

      YM on the hand is getting money every year so that it can stay alive. The funds are not used to find a solution to their ongoing problems, quite the contrary, they are using them to survive. State subsidies for Air Serbia have an end, unfortunately we can't say the same for Montenegro Airlines.

      YM has become a heavy burden and MNE taxpayers should not be forced to fund it any longer. By pulling the plug on YM, the market will open up, competition will increase and fares will go down. Just like it happened in Serbia back in 2010.

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    5. Nemjee complete fail

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    6. well if YM is "milking" someone, its just because this someone allows to be milked.

      my point: it not that Serbian authorities are not aware of this (should this really b the case as Nemjee presents it).
      More probably they have some agenda with YM

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    7. My guess is that this is a political decision but at the same time it's not like JU has any spare planes so as to add more flights to MNE. Sure, they have Aviolet but with those they can't be competitive.

      We will still have to see if this deal will be enough to keep YM in the game.

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    8. Nemjee what kind of arguments are those?

      JU is different because state take all loans to budget + investment od 100 million + 40 million per year
      - that means if Montenegro give (to half smaller company that Jat was when Etihad step in) 50 million investments + 20 million per year + take all debts (which are much smaller than Jat one was) what do you thing Montenegro should not have chance?

      - Montenegro will milk JU? How on earth. They will give market to JU, no possible development, no new routes, but in same time will sent passengers to code-share destinations via BEG. Even if Montenegro will give planes to JU that will give JU cheap RJ which they need so desperate.

      - in same time JU will not support any new routes from Montenegro, will have all passengers via BEG, will have monopol on JU best route to TGD and TIV.

      So, yes, basically Air Serbia will milk Montenegro who is desperate and will give their bottom for nothing!!!!

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    9. So what if the Serbian government took JU's debt, after all, it was because of them that debt even existed. Remember when JU took a loan to refurbish its fleet in 2010 or 2011. I think it was around €30 million from City Bank but the government ended up taking the lion's share of it? Jat was stuck with it afterwards.
      The Montenegrins did the same for YM. From what I could see the MNE government took over €3.7 million in December 2013 alone.

      They've been pouring so much money into YM but the situation has been going from bad to worse. At least with JU the investment (so far) seems to be paying off. No one is stopping their government from doing what we did in Belgrade, so why aren't they?

      Like I already said above, YM (just like OU) were approached three years ago and a decent code-share agreement was offered. YM refused because they didn't need it but also because they were the dominant carrier on the market. Now, things have changed and they immediately rushed to JU to save them by cooperating rather than competing with them.

      JU doesn't need to provide any new routes from MNE, it will offer more frequencies and more options via BEG to its passengers. It would be commercially unreasonable for JU to launch any flights out of MNE.

      So no, JU is not milking anyone, they are actually providing YM with a lifeline they don't deserve.
      YM on the other hand doesn't know what business is because they are a joke of an airline which has accumulated over €70 million in debt with no sign of improvement. Don't worry, when they do go belly up, no one will miss them and the market will not be (negatively) affected by it.

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  6. " I was hoping YM would go bankrupt as well..."

    You're an idiot

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    1. I understand your frustrations, I assume you are one of their employees as I don't see how anyone else could justify their existence.

      A country of 600.000 does not need a national carrier.

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    2. Hahahaha montenegro je parazit i to svi sem zaposlenih znaju

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    3. Nemjee, u re right. And we soon will see more airline victims. Mobility is important to a country, acually crucial for the progress. But MNE would rather invest in rail and road first, than subsidizing a national carrier with no chance on success
      The aviation market in Europe is still a bubble. Their is a reason why LH did not taker over one of their alliance partners OU and JP. Actually also no real need since OS is nearby. Or there is other plans, maybe let JP go belly and kill its old structures and come up with a new low coast airline for the Adriatic region called Adria, which could grow in the potential Adria tourism business
      This way not all goes to Easy, Ryan, Wizz, Norwegian. But honestly I hardly doubt. There is Eurowings, why shld LH take another risk just for the unstable Balkans region?

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    4. I agree with you but I think that when the moment comes, Lufthansa will unleash Eurowings onto our region. I fear that OU will keep on getting worse until there is nothing left to do but to pull the plug. Eurowings can do in ZAG when Wizz Air did in SKP, that is to base one or two planes and to serve destinations other than Star Alliance hubs.

      Countries such as Slovenia, Macedonia or Montenegro are too small to have their own carrier. Then you have Bosnia which is too dysfunctional to have one which leaves us with Serbia and Croatia. We will see what happens with Serbia but if OU goes under then Croats have no one else to blame but their politicians and incompetent management.

      What I am interested in finding out is what might Trade Air do in case OU goes bust. Will they stick to what they have been doing all these years or if they might try to set up some scheduled flights.

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    5. @AnonymousNovember 19, 2016 at 9:37 AM
      +1 My thoughts.

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  7. Nemjee that's rubbish. Look at non corrupt countries like Luxembourg and Icelando with airlines.

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    1. There is a reason why these two countries have decent airlines.

      1. Luxair is based in Europe's wealthiest country while its hub has a large catchment area relying on passengers from Belgium, France and Germany.

      2. Iceland has a great geographical location which has allowed Icelandair to become what it is today.

      Most importantly, both Luxembourg and Iceland are not infested with corruption as is the case with Montenegro. Both countries, despite their sizes, are extremely wealthy. How many Montenegrins take the bus to Belgrade simply because paying €120 for an airfare is too much?

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  8. Rumors going around that Germans took 1 mio EUR for their salaries only
    Schuster living in Hotel Grand Union LJU
    Btw 4K had just recently let one of their takeovers go belly. Company in Finland with around 350 employees

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    1. Wow this is a disaster... :(

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    2. If JP goes under then it will be good news for OU and ZAG!

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    3. 1 mio a lot in our region but 4-5 guys, thats 200k per dude and not really exaggerated
      Schuster in Union. They probl cld hve also found him a furnitured apt, wld be cheaper. Anyhow they tried, sometimes it works, sometimes not
      I doubt that JP closure will hve impact on ZAG
      New airlines will take over some of the existing JP routes, thats it.

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    4. It will impact because now even more Slovenians will use ZAG because of more options and lower fares.

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    5. Someone in Novo Mesto or Ptuj has used Zagreb before but I doubt that LJU travellers will drive to ZAG and as said the time JP goes belly, within a week u will see LH LX and OS take over. They hve lots of transitbiz which they need to secure
      My guess is as follows:
      LH to MUC FRA 5 daily
      LX to ZRH 2 daily, SUTT 3 daily
      OS to VIE 1-2 daily
      SN 1 daily
      SU SSJ 1 daily
      In SUTT maybe Norwegian 2-3 CPH flights
      Easy and Wizzair increasing presence
      Thats it.

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    6. No changes on AF JU AY TK YM LO schedule
      AF might use larger eqpmt

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    7. The inevitable fact is that LJU will lose all its transfer pax to SKP, PRN, SJJ and TGD. This will be a huge gap that will never fill in.

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    8. Would be good to know how much was transfer and how much O&D traffic. I m travelling ZRHLJU every couple weeks. 10 yearsago, the plane was full with transfer pax to ex YU and sometimes IST. Nowadays ZRHLJU, the most I see are Business Travellers or Slovenians on a tourist trip. I think transfer is down to 10-15%. Also Austrians fm Kaernten or Italians frm the Friuli Region use the flight
      I could imagine that Wizzair cld fill the gap and fly LJUSKP or LJUSPU

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    9. Whats the story on OU mechanics leaving the company. Dozens hve been leaving, OU tries to replace them with Serbian mechanics etc?

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    10. the math for SKP would b: 7 times a week with with CRJ900 = 630pax x 4 = 2520 pax a month x 12 = 30 240 pax a year*
      *by LF 100% and seating 90pax

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  9. So, now LJU becomes a true feeder for FRA. Pretty sure Fraport wont commit to a lowcost subsidy. Maybe if someone else (eg. Ljubljana, Tourism/Infrastructure Ministry) would pay then you could expect a expansion. But as such, without a carrier to use it as a hub, I think they are doomed to hover around the 1 mil mark.

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  10. I think there is no way for JP to survive the winter. The collapse is inevitable.Bad news for LJU airport and Slovenian tourism. I think that OU has bit more backing from it's country but will eventually follow its path due to EU rules and regulations, which are clearly lobbyistic and favour the big ones. AirMalta is also on the brink of bancruptcy....

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    1. Any argument for your pesimistic thinking ?

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    2. +1! JP and KM will never go bankrupt.

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  11. As I said before, Nordica and LCJ deals fell through. That means, that Adria is in need of quite a substantial amount of money this winter. Since 4K already said, they have no intentions of investing (more) money, they have no chance in hell to save the company in such a short period of time.

    Beside, 4K have proven themselves as a bunch of complete amateurs. Their idea of saving a company is to start at the end and work their way to the beginning. They thought by smiling to the passengers and serving them a cup of free water is somehow magically going to generate higher revenues and passenger numbers. I understand that Schuster is (quite) young to be a CEO and does not have any experience in aviation sector, but come on, that is a plan that newly graduated student in economics would come up with.

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  12. Now it is 100% what Lufthansa wants, their airport, their rules, their prices, their planes, their timetable, their routes..
    Slovenia does not want to pay for its own airline, apparently thinking that this won't reflect on our airports/tourism/business.

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    1. Aeropolis Ljubljana
      Terminal 2
      ???
      lol, just lol
      what a fucking joke
      Lufthansa will help you, sureeee

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  13. Had a thought. Maybe the new US president elect Donald Trump will save the airline. His wife is from Slovenia so why not save something from her own country. Rename it Melania Air...lol

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  14. OT: Budva, Dubrovnik weather coming days sunny and 19 to 22 C!
    Definitely worth of extending the season in these places. With the autumns being much sunnier and warmer past 20 years, more flights to the Adriatic during part of WITT is just a question if time

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    1. Global warming, not good.

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  15. JP lacks a clear strategy, it´s in Poland and France, in Pristina, it was in Estonia, it operates routes bizarre routes, no seasonal routes, no or barely any transfer points and deals with big airlines. They tried making LJU a hub, but it didn´t work out either. They are also not a cheap airline, so you cannot expect much.
    It´s so ironic that the richest and most civilized ex-Yu country has the poorest air figures.
    And if JP goes bust, the other will immediately fill the gap especially W6, FR and of course JU.

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    1. If JP goes bust, the gap would be filled by LH and OS, not by low cost airlines. LJU is too expensive for them and Slovenes do not want to pay subsidies to JP, let alone to parasite blackmailers.

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    2. I think I agree with you. I think JP can still be saved if they change their business model and focus entirely on LJU and launching potential destinations like in the past: KBP, OTP. Focus on Central Asia and Iran. Azerbaijdan, Georgia. Europe now belongs to Ryan, Wizz, LH group and IAG Group. The big boy having the bigger dick will end up shagging the smaller one with the smaller dick. Sad, but true.

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    3. You talk'in 'bout JP or AS.

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  16. OT: Wow, Zagreb!

    http://imageshack.com/i/poQ1wBuYj

    http://imageshack.com/i/poJ3twRUj

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    1. Simply great! Hoping they do not increase the rates so much so we only see expensive airlines flying to Zaggy. 4 months to go!

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  17. Adria should talk to LOT and become LOT's partner in the Balkans (like Nordica became LOT's partner for Scandinavia and Baltic States). Adria could operate a few routes for LOT to feed their hub in Warsaw. Moreover with help of LOT Adria could develop its network from LJU and build regional hub there to connect passengers travelling between ex-Yugoslavia, Albania, Romania, Bulgaria & Ukraine mainly to Italy, South France, Spain and Portugal as well as Benelux, Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

    Thanks to Nordica and Adria LOT would became no 1 player in CEE with three hubs at WAW, LJU and TLL and could connect East to West.

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