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Small Planet Airlines Poland (LLP) is a subsidiary of Small Planet Airlines (LIJ), Lithuania.
Skibicka Street 29
Warsaw PL-02-269, Poland
Poland (Republic of Poland) was established in 1918. It covers an area of 312,683 km. Its official language is Polish. The population is 40 million. The capital city is Warsaw.
November 2013: Small Planet Airlines Poland (LLP) is a subsidiary of Small Planet Airlines (LIJ), Lithuania. (LLP) is a Polish charter airline operating non-scheduled services from Warsaw, Katowice, Gdansk, and Poznan to popular holiday destinations throughout Europe, North Africa and Turkey on behalf of leading Polish tour operators.
(IATA) Code: LLP.
Main Base: Warsaw.
January 2014: Italian National Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC) grounded Small Planet Airlines Italia on January 20 due to its fragile financial situation, although its Lithuanian franchise parent, Small Planet Airlines (LIJ) is still operating normally.
In a statement posted on Small Planet Airlines Italia’s website, President, Stefano Canessa confirmed that all flights were suspended from January 20 following an “unexpected communication” from the (ENAC) on January 17. “This suspension was purely for economic and financial reasons and has nothing to do with the safety of our flight operations, which have always complied fully with the law,” Canessa said.
(ENAC) described Small Planet Airline Italia’s recent financial performance as “critical,” adding it had already placed a block on ticket sales beyond February 15. “They failed the essential requirements relating to financial aspects for the maintenance of the license,” (ENAC) said.
However, Canessa believes operations will resume shortly. “I'm extremely sorry for the inconvenience caused, but we are also confident that in a short time we will be able to provide the authorities all the evidence and clarifications of our economic and financial situation needed to restore flight operations,” he said.
Rome Fiumicino-based Boeing 737 operator, Small Planet Airlines Italia secured its Italian air operator’s certificate (AOC) in June 2011. It is a franchise of Lithuanian company Small Planet Airlines (LIJ), which provides the Italian carrier with brand rights, a subleased Boeing 737-700 and flight dispatch services.
“The suspension of the license of the Italian company shall in no way affect our companies in Lithuania and Poland,” the Lithuanian company said, distancing itself from its grounded partner.
It added that Small Planet Airlines Italia is owned by Aeroservizi (64.5%) and Avia Solutions Group (35.5%), whereas the Lithuanian Small Planet Airlines (LIJ) is 70% owned by (CEO), Vytautas Kaikaris and 30% owned by (COO) Andrius Staniulis.
Kaikaris did hold 4.5% of Small Planet Airlines Italia, but sold the stake in April 2013. Small Planet Airlines Italia was due to stop using the "Small Planet" brand at the end of 2013.
“[The] financial difficulties of Small Planet Italia have been known for some time. Therefore, the management teams of the respective companies have discussed payment schedule and agreed on termination of the agreement on use of Small Planet Airlines trademark,” the Lithuanian firm said.
Small Planet Airlines in Lithuania and Poland operates a fleet of 10 airplanes and carried more than >1 million passengers in 2013. The company was created from the assets of defunct Lithuanian scheduled carrier flyLAL.
October 2014: Small Planet Airlines Polska ((IATA) Code: P7, based at Warsaw Chopin) (LLP) will base 2 A320-233s in Siem Reap, Cambodia with effect from November onwards as part of an agreement with Cambodian carrier, Sky Angkor Airlines ((IATA) Code: based at ZA, Phnom Penh) (SKW). Under the terms of the deal, set to run until March next year, the 2 aircraft (883, SP-HAE and 914, SP-HAF) will be used on flights between Siem Reap, Cambodia and cities in China and South Korea.
June 2017: AviaAM Leasing, a Warsaw Stock Exchange listed aircraft leasing company, announced the sale of 3 Airbus A320 family aircraft to Poland’s Small Planet Airlines (LLP). The 220-seat A321s were delivered June 22.
June 2018: Small Planet Airlines (LIJ) appointed Vytautas Kaikaris as (CEO)-SPA Poland (LLP) with Bartosz Czajka joining the company as his Deputy Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
August 2018: Charter and wet-lease specialist Small Planet Airlines Poland (LLP) has promoted Bartosz Czajka to the role of (CEO) and board member, after former (CEO) Jarosław Jeschke stepped down earlier this year for health reasons. Czajka, who has been Small Planet Airlines Poland deputy (CEO) since June 11, has over a decade of aviation experience. He previously worked with the Star (SAL) Alliance and was Head Fleet Strategy for (LOT) Polish Airlines.
October 2018: News Item A-1: The Polish airline (LLP) of Lithuania’s Small Planet Group has filed for restructuring under Polish law and is seeking an investor, shortly after the group’s German airline filed for insolvency.
On October 8, Small Planet Airlines said its Polish leisure carrier (LLP) has entered “accelerated arrangement” restructuring proceedings. Accelerated arrangement is an insolvency step under Polish law, aimed at averting bankruptcy.
“The aim of the restructuring is to reduce the number of aircraft, attract additional financial investment and find a sustainable way to continue flight operations. Both legally and operationally, it is an absolutely different procedure from bankruptcy,” a Small Planet Airlines spokesperson said.
Small Planet Airlines Poland operated 10 aircraft in summer 2017, which it said made it Poland’s largest charter airline, dropping down to just 2 aircraft over the winter season. This pattern will be repeated in 2018, with a drop from 10 to 2 aircraft. Small Planet Airlines said “demand drops significantly” during the winter season.
“We have agreed with tour operators on updated schedules, so there will be no effect on passengers,” the spokesperson said.
Small Planet Airlines Poland (CEO) Bartosz Czajka said the airline holds “valuable slots” at Warsaw Chopin Airport and peak-summer slots at a number of Greek islands, including Heraklion, Zakynthos, Rhodes. He hopes this will attract an investor, now that the restructuring plan is in place.
“Small Planet Airlines Sp. z o. is an independent company, so restructuring in the Polish entity will have no effect on the flights operated by Small Planet Airlines Lithuania (LIJ): it will continue flying from Vilnius and foreign bases as planned. The Cambodian company, operating under Small Planet Airlines brand, will continue its usual operations as well,” it said.
Small Planet Airlines GmbH (the group’s German airline) has filed for insolvency but has permission to continue German and Dutch flight operations as it restructures.
Competition in the Polish charter market has increased over recent years, with Ryanair (RYR) setting up a new airline called Ryanair Sun. This summer, Ryanair Sun operated 5 airplanes for Polish tour operators. That fleet will double to > 10 airplanes for winter 2018.
News Item A-2: "Small Planet Airlines Lithuania to Restructure" by Victoria Moores (firstname.lastname@example.org), October 24, 2018.
Small Planet Airlines (LIJ) announced that its Lithuanian business (Small Planet Airlines (UAB)) has filed for restructuring under Lithuanian law, as a knock-on effect of debts at its German and Polish airlines that both hit financial difficulties this fall.
Small Planet Airlines GmbH (the group’s German airline) launched insolvency proceedings in September, after late aircraft deliveries, crew shortages and technical events collided with its rapid expansion plans.
In October, Small Planet’s Polish (LLP) operation also entered “accelerated arrangement” restructuring proceedings. Accelerated arrangement is an insolvency step under Polish law, aimed at averting bankruptcy.
These 2 restructuring processes have now taken their toll on Lithuanian operation Small Planet Airlines (UAB), which had been expected to deliver a +€3.4 million/+$3.9 million operating profit in 2018. However, the Lithuanian airline took on guarantees and joint liabilities for the German and Polish operations, creating exposure to their debts. “There is a major difference between restructuring in Polish and German companies, and in Lithuania. Small Planet Airlines in Poland and Germany were loss-making companies, whereas Small Planet Airlines Lithuania (LIJ) continued to operate successfully this year,” (LIJ) (CEO) Kristijonas Kaikaris said on October 23.
The Lithuanian restructuring is “a vital step” to protect the company from financial problems in Germany and Poland. “The company needs time to pay off the liabilities it has been exposed to due to restructuring proceeding in Poland and Germany,” the Small Planet Airlines Group said, adding that the restructuring will have no impact on the Lithuanian airline’s operations.
This winter, Small Planet Airlines Lithuania (LIJ) expects to carry 100,000 passengers with a fleet of 8 Airbus A320s.
“For the restructuring to be successful in Germany and Poland, finding a new investor is vital, whereas the Lithuanian company can survive without it. However, we are leaving this option on the table and having talks with potential investors since additional financial injection would allow Small Planet Airlines Lithuania (LIJ) to go through the restructuring easier and faster. We believe restructuring will allow us to soften the potential negative impact for the Lithuanian company and continue its flight operations successfully into the future,” Kaikaris said.
Small Planet Airlines (UAB) posted a +€2.3 million/+$2.8 million pre-tax profit in 2017 and passenger numbers were up +32% this summer. The company expects revenue to reach €122.7 million by the end of 2018, up nearly +20% year-over-year.