Malev ceased operations

Starting 6.00 A.M. February 3rd (today), Malev, Hungary’s national airline, ceased operations.

The company struggled for a long time with problems. The Hungarian government took a 95% share of Malev in March 2010; at the end of January 2012 budebts were around $270 million.

Even if the company had a plan and offered improved services, the results weren’t satisfactory. An article on Business Traveler mentions that “Malev CEO Lorant Limburger told the airline’s board that “despite the continually improving commercial results the financing of activities had become unviable”.”.

Also, it seems that Wizzair come to the rescue and offered some special flights to the passengers that were supposed to fly with Malev – details here.

From the official website:

“Based on the Board of Directors’ decision Hungary’s National Airline ceased its operation to minimize its losses. According to this statement, after nearly 66 years of continuous operation, Malév aircrafts will not depart from 6 am 03 February.

“Unfortunately, the event occurred which we had a greatest fear of and we wanted to avoid with might and main. Although, until the latter days there were prospects to continue operation and the trust of our passengers is unbroken, our partners lost their trust due to the information published in the last days and they started to ask for payment of their services in advance. This speeded up the cash outflow and the situation of the airline became untenable. It is also known that the owner, despite the best intentions, is unable to provide additional financial resources to operate after the EU decision. Considering all these the Board decided to order the cease of operation of the Hungary’s National Airline. We apologize to all of our passengers.” – announced CEO Loránt Limburger.”.

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