From 17 aircraft, the fleet of Aero Contractors contracted to three, and it was only a matter of time that it would temporarily close shop, as it did on Thursday, September 1!
With over-bloated 1,700 staffers servicing only three aircraft, the overhead, from fuel to servicing and maintenance and salaries, became unbearable – and its management announced on Wednesday, August 31, that it was suspending all scheduled flights.
The news didn’t come as a surprise to many close observers as the airline has been having a running battle with its creditors, with Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria intervening and acting as receiver managers. Its debt portfolio is humongous and scary.
The economic climate, with high cost of aviation fuel and escalating exchange rate and this back breaking recession further smashed the hope of survival for Aero Contractors.
Telling its workforce of 1,700 to proceed on indefinite leave without pay has again added to the million off-loaded to the labour market since the downturn in the economy began last year.
Insiders, however, claimed that the company won’t be shut entirely. That unscheduled flights will continue to be explored by Aero Contractors.