Norway

Budget airline Norwegian Air expects demand for European short-haul travel to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2023 or 2024, it said as it presented a first-quarter pretax loss of 1.19 billion crowns ($145 million) and Reuters reported. The carrier this month said it aims to raise 6 billion crowns in fresh capital, up from the 4.5 billion originally planned, as part of a scheme to emerge from court-ordered bankruptcy protection next month.

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The Irish High Court has approved a survival plan for the troubled airline Norwegian Air and related companies, the Irish Times reported. In a written decision Mr. Justice Michael Quinn said he was satisfied to approve the scheme put together by the airline’s examiner Kieran Wallace of KPMG. The airline’s Oslo-based parent company and several of its Irish-registered subsidiaries had sought the protection of the Irish courts due to factors including the devastating impact that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the airline industry and international travel.

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Norwegian Air now aims to raise up to 6 billion crowns ($711 million) in fresh capital, up from a planned 4.5 billion, to bolster its resources before emerging from bankruptcy protection next month as the pandemic continues to curb travel, Reuters reported. Financed largely by debt, Norwegian Air grew rapidly, serving routes across Europe and flying to North and South America, Southeast Asia and the Middle East before the COVID-19 pandemic plunged the airline into crisis.
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Norwegian Air has won approval from creditors in Norway to restructure its debt and an Oslo court has approved the plan, the airline said on Monday, clearing the way for it to raise new capital and emerge from bankruptcy next month, Reuters reported. Financed largely by debt, Norwegian Air grew rapidly, serving routes across Europe and flying to North and South America, Southeast Asia and the Middle East before the COVID-19 pandemic plunged the airline into crisis.
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Offshore drilling rig contractor Seadrill has asked creditors to write off more than 85% of its debts in exchange for a 99% stake in the reorganized company, a court filing showed, Reuters reported. The Oslo-listed firm controlled by Norwegian-born billionaire John Fredriksen in February filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S., the second time it has done so in four years.
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Norwegian Air’s shareholders voted in favour of the company’s debt restructuring plan on Thursday, business news website E24 reported. The vote was the first of several procedural hurdles the airline faces as it battles to survive the coronavirus pandemic which has decimated air travel. More than 99% of shareholders supported the so-called scheme of arrangement, E24 reported, which will be voted on separately by several groups of creditors on Thursday and Friday.
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A group of executives instrumental in Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA’s failed attempt to provide low-cost, trans-Atlantic travel are trying again, this time with a new airline, Bloomberg News reported. Norse Atlantic Airways aims to start operations by year-end, according to a statement Monday. It is 53% owned by shipping entrepreneur Bjorn Tore Larsen, whose company OSM Aviation provided flight crews for Norwegian Air before the carrier filed for insolvency.
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Norwegian Air submitted its final restructuring offer to creditors on Thursday in what the budget airline said was a major step in its plan to slash debt and reduce its fleet to survive the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters reported. If approved by enough creditors and Ireland’s High Court, the so-called scheme of arrangement will enable Norwegian to raise new capital and emerge from bankruptcy protection in Ireland and Norway. “This is an important milestone in the process of securing Norwegian’s future,” Chief Executive Jacob Schram said.
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Norwegian Air expects its dispute with Boeing over the cancellation of orders for 97 aircraft to be decided in U.S. legal proceedings and not as part of an Irish restructuring process, a lawyer for the airline said on Friday, Reuters reported. Norwegian was given protection from bankruptcy in both Norway and Ireland, where most of its assets are registered, late last year and is aiming to emerge from the process in April with fewer aircraft and less debt. On Friday, the airline indicated to the Irish court that it was seeking to repudiate three aircraft sales contracts with Boeing.
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Offshore drilling rig contractor Seadrill said on Thursday it had taken an additional $2.9 billion non-cash impairment on its assets due to a bleak outlook for the sector, which has reduced demand for its drilling rigs, Reuters reported. Seadrill, which in February filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the United States for the second time in four years, said it expected offshore drilling demand to remain depressed well into 2021, with some degree of market recovery seen by mid-2022.
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