New Bidders May Get More Time for Proposals
Boeing/CRG Group Drops Opposition to Extended Schedule
HONOLULU -- Hawaiian Airlines is getting the extended timetable it wanted and can now go about the business of developing the best possible plan to exit bankruptcy.
Last week, before Bankruptcy Court Judge Robert Faris, counsel for Trustee Joshua Gotbaum and Hawaiian's Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors argued that they needed more time because so many groups were interested in investing in the airline. Gotbaum and the Committee said that, having received proposals from 13 additional parties, they needed the time to work with five of them to develop the best possible proposal for the airline.
Boeing and Corporate Recovery Group, who initially opposed the extended schedule, have now agreed to it, as has Hawaiian Holdings.
Yesterday, the Trustee, Committee, Boeing/CRG and Holdings filed a proposed order confirming their support of the new schedule. A hearing before the bankruptcy court to seek approval is scheduled for today.
“There's no doubt Hawaiian will exit bankruptcy successfully,” said Gotbaum. “The issue is ‘What's the best way to do so?' With a few extra weeks, we'll have much better choices than any of the plans that have been filed. We can develop a range of proposals and choose the best.”
Under the revised schedule, plans of reorganization will be filed at the end of July. Any plan could be revised in early August and a court hearing to decide the best plan would be held at the beginning of October. Under the revised schedule, Hawaiian would anticipate emerging from bankruptcy in late October or November, about six weeks later than previously planned.
In response to claims that the delay would be costly, Gotbaum and the Committee noted that Hawaiian is doing very well and that its cash reserves were over $100 million and growing. Said Gotbaum, “Hawaiian Airlines isn't a ‘damsel in distress.' It is one of the best airlines in the country, profitable and – with the start of our new service to Australia – growing.”
Backing up this point, Hawaiian is today also releasing its financial results for April. Last month, the airline had an operating profit of $7.1 million, despite sharply higher fuel prices; in the same month a year ago, it had an operating profit of $0.7 million. The improvement was due primarily to improvements in revenue: $64.5 million in April 2004, compared to $54.1 million a year ago. Once filed, the complete financial report can be obtained at HawaiianAir.com.
New Timetable for Exiting Bankruptcy
The key dates proposed for approval at Friday's court hearing are:
July 29, 2004: Deadline to file plans of reorganization.
August 9: Deadline to make material modifications to plans of reorganization.
August 31: Disclosure statement hearing (subject to court availability).
October 5 or later: Confirmation hearing (subject to court availability).
About Hawaiian Airlines
Hawaiian Airlines, the nation's number one on-time carrier, is recognized as one of the best airlines in America. Business travelers recently surveyed byCondé Nast Traveler rated Hawaiian Airlines as having the best in-flight service and meals of any U.S. carrier. Hawaiian was recently ranked fourth best in the nation overall by Travel + Leisure.
Celebrating its 75th year of continuous service, Hawaiian Airlines is Hawaii's largest and longest-serving airline, and the second largest provider of passenger air service between Hawaii and the mainland U.S. Hawaiian offers nonstop service to Hawaii from more mainland U.S. gateways
than any other airline. Hawaiian also provides approximately 100 daily jet flights among the Hawaiian Islands, as well as service to American Samoa and Tahiti.
Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. is a subsidiary of Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. (AMEX and PCX: HA). Since the appointment of a bankruptcy trustee on May 16, 2003, Hawaiian Holdings has had no involvement in the management of Hawaiian Airlines and has had limited access to information concerning the airline.
Additional information on Hawaiian Airlines is available at www.HawaiianAir.com.