Sunday, April 27, 2008

Eos Airlines files for bankruptcy, ceases operations

Eos logoThe management of Eos Airlines, the all-premium class airline flying between New York and London, announced that they have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and that they are ceasing passenger operations. Eos announced in a press release that that the petition was filed yesterday, April 26, 2008, in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Southern District of New York.

From the press release:
On April 26, 2008, Eos plans to operate Flight 6 (8:30pm) from JFK to STN. On April 27, 2008, Eos plans to operate Flights 3 (1:00pm) and 7 (6:30pm) from STN to JFK. Flight 5 from STN to JFK and all flights from JFK to STN on April 27, 2008 are canceled. Eos will immediately implement a reduction in its workforce, eliminating the positions of most of its employees, and will cease operations entirely after April 27, 2008.
Since October of 2005, Eos had been flying Boeing 757-200 aircraft, in a 48-passenger all-business class configuration, between New York (JFK) and London Stansted (STN). Eos had plans for additional routes, but apparently fell victim to the current credit crunch before service on the new routes could be launched.

A statement attributed to Eos CEO, Jack Williams, said that the airline had "insufficient cash on hand to continue operations."

"There are times in business when even though you execute your business plan and even though your employees do their jobs beautifully, external forces prevent you from controlling your own destiny," Williams said.

Eos, headquartered in Purchase, NY, is the fourth airline in the U.S. to cease operations in less than a month. Aloha Airlines, ATA Airlines, and Skybus abruptly shut down their passenger services in quick succession. Asian budget carrier Oasis Hong Kong Airlines recently ceased operations as well. Frontier Airlines and charter carrier Champion Air also have filed for bankruptcy, but are continuing to operate, at least for now. Champion already announced that it will shut down operations at the end of May.

Sadly, an awful lot of airline crew members and ground staff have become jobless this month, through no fault of their own. One cannot help but ask the question that's on everyone's mind: Who's next?

By the way, Eos competitor Silverjet, which flies between Newark and London's Luton Airport, is offering Eos customers "the opportunity to re-book on available Silverjet services," according to a message on the Silverjet website. They had better hurry, though. There are rumors within the aviation industry that Silverjet is struggling financially, too.