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Norwegian Air has filed for bankruptcy

November 18, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

An automobile passes near a passenger aircraft, operated by Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA, grounded at Stavanger Airport in Stavanger, Norway, on Thursday, April 30, 2020. Norwegian, the low-cost carrier fighting to qualify for a bailout, presented a plan to relieve part of its heavy debt burden that would largely wipe out existing shareholders and warned most flights would stay grounded until next year. Photographer: Carina Johansen/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Norwegian Air is seeking protection from its creditors as it attempts to restructure its business and survive the coronavirus pandemic.

London (CNN Business)Norwegian Air is seeking protection from its creditors as it attempts to restructure its business and survive the coronavirus pandemic.

Examinership allows companies to seek a court's protection from creditors for up to 100 days, and is the rough equivalent of Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the United States.

"The purpose of the process is to reduce debt, rightsize the fleet and secure new capital," Norwegian Air said.

"Seeking protection to reorganize under Irish law is a decision that we have taken to secure the future of Norwegian for the benefit of our employees, customers and investors," CEO Jacob Schram said.

Norwegian Air was founded in 1993 and began a rapid expansion nearly a decade ago, seeking to apply the business model pioneered by Ryanair in Europe and Southwest in the United States to transatlantic flights.

Norwegian Air said on Wednesday that it will continue to operate its route network, which has been severely limited as a result of the coronavirus, and its shares will trade as normal on the Oslo Stock Exchange.

The carrier warned last week that it would need additional cash to continue operating through the first quarter of next year and beyond.

It received a state-backed loan of 3 billion Norwegian Krone ($288. 7 million) in May, but the country's government has ruled out providing more financial assistance — a decision Schram described as "a slap in the face. "

Its quarterly operating loss amounted to 2. 8 billion Krone ($310 million), while cash and cash equivalents had dwindled to just 3. 4 billion Krone ($376 million) at the end of September.

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