Budget airline Norwegian has had the first stage of its restructuring plan approved by a court.
The airline sought bankruptcy protection in Ireland – known there as Examinership – last November, because its aircraft assets and some subsidiary companies are registered there. Ireland’s High Court has now approved its plans, which include quitting the long-haul market.
The same proposals will now be voted on by creditors in Norway.
“Following this, the company will start the process of raising capital with the goal of a final resolution by the end of May,” it said, adding that the goal of the process “is primarily to strengthen the company financially and to right-size the fleet in order to adapt to future demands”.
The Irish Court’s blessing comes after the airline’s creditors approved the reconstruction process “by a large majority”.
“We are very happy to learn that the Irish High Court has approved the reconstruction plan. We can now go forward with the reconstruction in Norway and initiate a capital raise,” said Jacob Schram, Norwegian chief executive.
He added: “This is a demanding and ongoing process; however, the result of the court rulings today enforces our beliefs of a positive final outcome. We are looking forward to and are preparing for a post-pandemic world, without travel restrictions and open borders.”
The Irish High Court’s decision will be legally binding following an appeal period of one month and Norwegian will technically still be in Examinership until capital is raised to relaunch it.