'Reasonable prospects' Comair can be saved - administrators

Comair has assets of R7.4 billion ($407.1 million) on its balance sheet compared to R5.5 billion of liabilities and is not factually insolvent, the company said in a statement.

Kulula.com aircraft. Picture: Kulula travel

JOHANNESBURG - Administrators in charge of aviation company Comair believe there are “reasonable prospects” of saving the company, it said on Tuesday, after filing for a form of bankruptcy protection earlier this month.

Comair, which operates the local British Airways franchise and budget airline kulula.com, entered a “business rescue” after a lockdown aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus forced South African airlines to halt all commercial passenger flights.

State flag carrier South African Airways is under the same bankruptcy protection process, while smaller state airline SA Express has been placed under “provisional liquidation”.

Comair is not factually insolvent and has assets of R7.4 billion ($407.1 million) versus R5.5 billion of liabilities, the company said in a statement on Tuesday. Its administrators will probably publish a business rescue plan on 9 June, it added.

Comair says on its website that it hopes to resume operations around November. It was already in the middle of a turnaround process before the coronavirus struck and reported a 564 million rand half-year loss.