For more information about our expertise in this sector, please contact Nigel Atkinson.

Although growth is returning to the global economy and oil prices have softened, aviation is still a fiercely competitive and challenging sector in which to generate profitable growth.

Since the September 11 terrorist attacks in the US in 2001, the sector has gone through a very difficult time and has seen many airlines, including several flag carriers, either close down, merge, or seek formal insolvency through procedures such as US Chapter 11 protection.

This has been compounded by such incidents as health scares, volcanic ash, and the ‘Arab Spring’, – all of which have impacted revenues. These trends and events have particularly affected the industry in Europe where the regulatory environment has not enabled the same degree of consolidation to take place as has happened in North America. The recent and continuing Covid-19 pandemic crisis is of a different dimension and brings an existential threat to the industry.

Restructuring in such an industry, with its high levels of operational gearing and uniquely complex matrix of regulatory involvement requires unique expertise. The BTG Global Advisory team have significant expertise within this sector, including much of it with large flag carriers.

Our Approach

With aviation companies notoriously difficult to trade through formal restructuring processes in many jurisdictions, our initial approach to restructuring will always focus on stabilising the business and finding effective methods of reducing costs and enhancing cash flow. This is in order to gain time for a restructuring plan to be developed and implemented in conjunction with management and other stakeholders. During this initial phase we will also assist in developing and stress-testing contingency plans.

During the next stage, airlines should be focused on revenue optimisation, rightsizing their fleet and retail footprint, employment costs and fuel price management contracts. We assist management achieve this in order to provide a suitable platform for future growth.

Finally, we work on developing a new financial structure suitable for the reorganised airline, which may involve new finance and changes in relative creditor and investor rights.

Risk Analysis

When it comes to tackling one of the most sensitive issues in international aviation, the risk of terror, we are able to implement tried and tested methods to securing an airline and its passengers. As pioneers in the development of accurate risk analysis and profiling systems, we advise carriers on how to implement the process on an international stage.

Regulatory Support

As a highly regulated industry, aviation businesses frequently find themselves in the throes of regulatory investigations or calls for evidence. We have experience in working with major carriers and our technology consulting services provide essential support to ascertain exposures or liabilities. By deploying state-of-the-art investigative techniques and software, data, documents and emails can be searched quickly and accurately using predefined terms to give an accurate picture and to help make the correct judgements in defence.

Our multidisciplinary approach means that we will pursue every option available to ensure the ongoing success of the business or investment.

Our capabilities include:

  • Business stabilisation and cash management
  • Reorganisation and strategic plan development
  • Performance improvement analysis, including routes, fleet utilisation, slot timings, service change programmes
  • Cost analysis, including labour, fuel, and non-fuel
  • Marketing, sales and yield management assessment
  • Managed exits, including corporate simplification, withdrawal and de-risk
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Refinancing
  • Risk management and profiling
  • Regulatory investigation support

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