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Article from BTNews 3 SEPTEMBER 2018

VLM in liquidation

Just weeks after dropping most of its flights, Belgian carrier VLM Airlines went into liquidation on Friday, suspending all operations, including flights into London City Airport (LCY). The news was broken in a statement on the company website.

The statement read: “SHS Aviation BV, the majority shareholder of the NV SHS Antwerp Aviation (VLM), today decided at an extraordinary general assembly to dissolve the airline and to liquidate it.

“The settlement takes effect immediately. Youri Steverlynck and Birgitta Van Itterbeek were appointed as liquidators. They are responsible for the contacts with potential buyers.

The statement noted that earlier last month it had been announced that VLM would discontinue the connections to Aberdeen, Birmingham, Cologne-Bonn, Maribor, Munich and Rostock (BTN 13 August).

The plan was said to be for the airline to focus in future on business charter flights and the Antwerp – London City Airport and Antwerp – Zurich routes. These scheduled flights were also now cancelled, the statement added.

VLM started operations in May 1993 with a scheduled service between its original hub, Antwerp, and LCY. The company later switched its hub to the London airport but after a management buy-out in late 2014, it moved back to Antwerp.

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All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum

Jacques BANKIR, Paris

You missed, the best part of the story. When AF made a big push for LCY slots in 2007, including control of Eastern and Scott slots, the situation was: BA 25% slots, AFKL 25%, Star 25%, VLM 25%. So AF made the move, bought VLM and made it a CityJet subsidy. The VLM owners got a very high price! But with the 2008 crisis, that domination was short lived especially given the BA reaction and its investment in Embraer 170/190.

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