The airline was struggling before this all started, and in January 2020, management had set up a Transformation Steering Committee, intended to address the financial difficulties of the business model.
While the company claims progress was made, the current situation has led to “a complete erosion of the company’s revenue base.”
With uncertainty about when international air traffic will resume, and with indications showing that this may not happen until late 2020, the airline is left without options.
Air Mauritius won’t be able to meet financial obligations in the foreseeable future, and therefore the company has been placed into voluntary administration.
Air Mauritius was struggling before this started
Over the past several years, Air Mauritius has swung in and out of profitability. In the last financial year, the airline reported a 29 million EUR loss, compared to a 4.9 million EUR profit the previous year.
Air Mauritius operates a fleet of 13 aircraft, including:
- Two A319s
- Two A330-200s
- Two A330-900neos
- Two A340-300s
- Two A350-900s
- Three ATR-72s
As is the case with many national airlines, Mauritius relies heavily on the airline to bring tourists and supplies to the island. Even if the airline isn’t turning a direct profit, there’s value to the country in having a national airline, given the overall benefit it provides.
Air Mauritius has entered voluntary administration. I’m not sure how this is going to play out, though I imagine Mauritius will keep their national airline alive as much as possible.
The airline has just in the past few years acquired six new long haul aircraft, which seemed ambitious, especially as two have already been leased to other airlines. I wonder if we’ll see Air Mauritius dump more of their new planes to cut costs, or instead retire their older planes (like the A340-300… which was in the works already).