November 02, 2020: Comair welcomed the Competition Commission’s approval of SA Bidco’s proposed merger with Comair resulting in its acquisition of the business. After the current retrenchment process is concluded, Comair may not initiate further retrenchments as a result of the merger for three years from the flying start date, unless retrenchments are lawfully effected for operational requirements unrelated to the merger.

Comair’s business rescue process navigated past two important milestones last week as the investors secured the required credit approval from various lenders of debt funding, as well as approval from various regulators necessary for their investment in Comair to proceed.

Also Read: Comair secures $2.27 mn for interim survival

The first of these was met late last month. The second was achieved earlier last week when various lenders confirmed they would provide the requisite new debt and that capital and interest repayments in respect of existing debt would be deferred for certain agreed periods.

Richard Ferguson, one of the business rescue practitioners said that the focus is now on ensuring the remaining conditions are met so the investment can proceed and become unconditional before the end of November 2020.

Comair CEO, Wrenelle Stander welcomed the recent, significant developments and said the business rescue process had been difficult for everyone at Comair, however, that it was encouraging that these further major milestones have been reached.

Also Read: Comair CEO Wrenelle Stander appointed as chairperson of AASA

“We knew that the business rescue process was not going to be easy, however, when the lockdown grounded us and we were not able to earn any revenue it was the only way to save the company and most of the jobs. It is very reassuring that we took the right decision at the time. It is certainly encouraging that such material progress has been made toward returning to service.

Glenn Orsmond, representing the Comair Rescue Consortium, said he was confident that Comair flights would be back in the air in December. He said precise timings and details would be announced in due course.

Also Read: South Africa’s Comair enters into business rescue as Covid-19 crisis hits

“We’re immensely grateful for all the support we’ve had from everyone to reach this important point. We’re all looking forward to welcoming the flying public back on board again and for Comair to help rebuild the aviation sector and play our part in South Africa’s economic revival.”

It is anticipated the business rescue process will be concluded by March 31, 2021, after which Comair will continue to operate as a sustainable business.

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