Published On: Mon, Apr 20th, 2020

Virgin Australia goes into administration despite Richard Branson offering Necker Island | UK | News

Sir Richard Branson owns 10 per cent of the Australian franchise and is now battling to save Virgin Atlantic. The airline boss announced that he has offered his £80 million private Caribbean island Necker as collateral for any public money spent trying to save the company.

Today the business tycoon tweeted: “Dear @VirginAustralia team. I am so proud of you and everything we have achieved together.

“This is not the end of Virgin Australia, but I believe a new beginning.

“I promise that we will work day and night to turn this into reality.”

The airline industry has been left crippled by the coronavirus which has seen multiple flights cancelled.

Airlines Flybe in the UK and regional careers Trans States Airlines and Compass Airlines in the US have collapsed.

Virgin Australia will now be managed by Deloitte while it restructures and looks for a buyer.

However, the restructure could involve scrapping more profitable routes, which would leave Qantas as the only provider able to charge what they want for ticket prices.

READ MORE:Flights: UK airports not testing new arrivals for COVID-19

Virgin Australia CEO Paul Scurrah said: ‘Our decision today is about securing the future of Virgin Australia and emerging on the other side of the COVID-19 crisis.

“Australia needs a second airline and we are determined to keep flying.”

Yesterday in a message on Twitter Sir Richard said his employees had “virtually unanimously” voted to take a wage reduction to save jobs.

On the social media site, many had expressed their frustration at the billionaire for his “unacceptable” COVID 19 response.

One said: “Should the government bailout Richard Branson? First, it should insist he pays out of his own pocket.

“Personal fortunes may go down as well as up. It’s at times like this it’s so clear that capitalism can’t bear the rough as well as the smooth. “

Another replied: “I hear your Airline is half-owned by an American company. Why should British taxpayers bail them out?“

A third commented: “Perhaps he can sell an island? Strangely enough, Virgin Atlantic (another non-tax-paying airline) has also gone tits up. And want a bailout from the UK Government.”

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