The current crisis in the aviation industry seems to have suddenly caught up with several airlines. As of today, Mauritian airline Air Mauritius has been placed into administration. The airline’s board came to a decision following “a complete erosion of the company’s revenue base.”
Air Mauritius has become the second airline to enter administration proceedings in as many days voluntarily. Yesterday Australian carrier Virgin Australia also entered voluntary administration caused by the current crisis. It looks as though other airlines could also suffer similar fates before the crisis is over.
Entering voluntary administration
According to the letter issued by the Air Mauritius board of directors, the African airline has been placed into voluntary administration. This action has been taken to safeguard the airline, given the current situation. According to the letter, Mr. A. Sattar Hajee Abdoula, FCA, and Mr. Arvindsingh K. Gokhool, FCCA of Grant Thornton have been appointed as the airline’s administrators.
The administration proceedings have come as a direct result of the current situation being faced by the aviation industry as a whole. In its letter, the airline stated that its entire revenue base had been eroded. The erosion has been caused by a decrease in demand tied to many different travel bans enacted by separate national governments. The airline believes that demand will not begin to return until the end of 2020.
Who is Air Mauritius?
Air Mauritius was formed in 1967 as a joint venture between Air France, BOAC (the British Airways predecessor), and the Mauritian government. However, the African airline didn’t begin to operate services until half a decade later in 1972. A year later, the airline started services to London via Nairobi with a Vickers VC10. This was upgraded two years later to a Boeing 707.
According to data from Planespotters, the airline’s current fleet consists of 13 aircraft:
- 3x ATRs;
- 2x Airbus A319;
- 4x Airbus A330;
- 2x Airbus A340;
- 2x Airbus A350s.
Also, South African Airways has leased two Airbus A350s from Air Mauritius. These aircraft are quite new, with both under half a year old. However, South African Airways’ future also currently doesn’t look bright. Two of the airline’s Airbus A330 aircraft are relatively new A330neos with an average age of 1 year each. In total, the airline’s average fleet age is 11.3 years.
Air Mauritius is not alone
Air Mauritius is not alone in entering administration proceedings. Just yesterday, Virgin Australia also entered voluntary administration. Virgin was also tipped over the edge by the current pandemic-induced crisis.
Meanwhile, the future isn’t looking too rosy for South African Airways, who lease two of Air Mauritius’ Airbus A350s. The airline has now been cut off from government support. Additionally, last weekend we reported that it would lay off all of its staff by the end of March.
What are your thoughts about Air Mauritius entering voluntary administration proceedings? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.