Flybe has confirmed it is talking to “a number of strategic operators” about a possible sale of the group.
The carrier said that it was “undertaking a comprehensive review of the various strategic options open to it to address the current challenges facing the airline industry and maximise value for shareholders”.
Owner of London Southend airport, Stobart operates a number of routes under Flybe branding, including a forthcoming service between Cornwall Airport Newquay and Southend.
Flybe said that other options open to it included “further capacity and cost saving measures”, and “initiatives to strengthen the balance sheet and preserve cash resources”.
The group has appointed Evercore to assist it with the review, and said that parties with a potential interest in making a proposal should contact the financial adviser.
It said that further announcements regarding timings for the formal sale process will be made “as appropriate”, but stressed that “There can be no certainty that an offer will be made”.
Last month Flybe issued a profit warning, and today confirmed that pre-tax profits fell 54 per cent to £7.4m in the six months to the end of September.
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.
Earlier this year the carrier confirmed plans to return all of its Embraer 195 jets, as part of plans to reduce the size of its fleet.
In September Flybe unveiled a streamlined livery which it said would be gradually rolled out across the carrier’s Bombardier Q400 and Embraer 175 aircraft over the next six years.
And yesterday Eastern Airways unveiled plans for a new route between Newcastle and London City airport, to be marketed by Flybe.