Virgin Australia has announced it will be discontinuing low-budget airline Tigerair and reducing its workforce by 3,000 jobs as the company struggles to manage the financial impacts of the global health crisis. It will also be suspending all long-haul international flights to refocus its remaining resources on domestic and short-haul routes. The company will retain Tigerair's licence to fly, with the possibility of relaunching the airline once its financial circumstances improve, a statement from Virgin Australia outlined.
The airline went into voluntary administration in April and reportedly has debts of close to $7 billion. Virgin Australia is currently in talks to sell the brand to American private equity firm Bain Capital, with a final decision on whether the airline will be salvaged due later this month.
Some of the companies hardest hit by the global crisis have been airlines. One of the industry’s top bodies, the International Air Transport Association, announced last week that widespread global travel, which has contracted by as much as 90 per cent globally, would not return to 2019 levels until at least 2024.