Tycoon brothers set to sell Scottish airline ‘in coming weeks’

Glasgow-based Loganair could be within weeks of a firm sale bid by Stephen and Peter Bond, who previously ran North Sea helicopter company Bond Aviation.

The airline appointed advisers to find a buyer for the business, which employs 840, in October.

Jonathan Hinkles, Loganair chief executive, said at the time that “after 25 years of involvement in Loganair including the last 10 years as sole owners, our shareholders Stephen and Peter Bond are working to find a new custodian for ‘Scotland’s airline’”.

He said then: “It’s for the best of reasons – Stephen is now 72 years of age and wishes to step back from day-to-day business.

“That’s really the beginning, middle and end of the story right there.”

HeraldScotland: Jonathan Hinkles, Loganair chief executive, said larger aircraft have been introduced Jonathan Hinkles, Loganair chief executive, said larger aircraft have been introduced (Image: Loganair)

Its accounts showed Loganair made a pre-tax profit of £5 million during the 12 months to the end of March 2022 – its 60th year in operation – on revenues of £161.7m.

The return to profit of course came after two successive years of losses because of the Covid pandemic which brought much of the airline industry to a standstill.

Amid a return to air travel, the airline was this week reporting that passenger numbers on its scheduled Shetland routes have reached the highest level since the Covid-19 pandemic.

The airline said it has also worked to develop new incoming tourism business to the Scottish islands from American visitors, “helped by a record number of non-stop flights from the US to Edinburgh this year to provide easier access to Scotland”.

HeraldScotland: The airline is upgrading its fleet, with new aircraft bringing 'enhanced capacity across the network with more passenger seats on each flight'The airline is upgrading its fleet, with new aircraft bringing ‘enhanced capacity across the network with more passenger seats on each flight’ (Image: Loganair)

It highlighted routes recording growth that included the key link to Aberdeen, now served by Loganair’s larger 72-seat ATR72 aircraft, where passenger numbers are up by 20% versus last July.

New, larger aircraft have also been introduced in the last month to the majority of Sumburgh’s services to Glasgow and to Inverness via Kirkwall as part of a multi-million-pound investment programme to replace its Saab 340 aircraft.

It was reported in the Shetland Times that Loganair now “hopes that a ‘firm’ bid to buy the airline will materialise ‘in the coming weeks’”.

It reported a “good level of interest” since the sale announcement was made.

The newspaper also said Mr Hinkles indicated, that, eight months in, there was “no rush for a sale”, and “they were hoping that the strong interest in the airline ‘will materialise into something firm in the coming weeks’”.

A spokesperson for Loganair told The Herald: “The sale process is proceeding as expected and we hope to provide an update later in the year.”

HeraldScotland: AG Barr is to make changes at the top, with Roger White set to retireAG Barr is to make changes at the top, with Roger White set to retire (Image: Stewart Attwood)

The first non-Barr family member to head Irn-Bru maker AG Barr, Roger White, 58, is to step down from the Cumbernauld company, business editor Ian McConnell revealed this week.

AG Barr said: “Chief executive Roger White has agreed with the board that he will, at a mutually agreed date in the next 12 months, step down from his role as CEO, resign as a director of the company and retire from the company.”

The firm added: “The board will immediately commence a formal succession process, including an external search, to ensure a smooth leadership transition.”

Also this week, a Highlands mountain range resort said it has reaped the benefits of a move into the hospitality industry, deputy business editor Scott Wright reported.

Nevis Range has invested in a new hotel, restaurant, bar, and bike shop, helped by £1 million of funding from HSBC.

It said the addition of the services, which also include conference and training facilities, has put it on course to turn over £5.6m in its current financial year, £2m more than last time. The resort said it also expects to return to profit.

Article source: https://airlines.einnews.com/article/648350890/JhxZKCZH_UFa50_M?ref=rss&ecode=vaZAu9rk30b8KC5H

Leave a Reply