The news that Virgin Australia Airlines has been placed into voluntary administration underlines the depth of the economic damage being wrought across the nation by the need to shut down the economy as part of efforts to contain the coronavirus. But as our in-house financial and investment adviser MORRIE BEZZLE writes, every problem also brings opportunities.
I have been a cabin crew member employed by Virgin Australia for the best part of the past decade and have recently been out of work as a result of the government-ordered nationwide business shutdown as part of its coronavirus response plan.
Given the extent of economic damage our national economy has sustained so far, and the damage to economies around the world, what are the odds of Virgin actually being able to trade out of its current difficulties.
I don’t know who else to ask, but I hope you can give me some hope of getting back to work in a job my partner and I really need to feed, clothe, and school our young family.
I hear you loud and clear, old son, and I share your disappointment and anxiety at the impacts on business the ongoing shutdown is having around our nation and the rest of the world.
Sadly your employers ran their airline into the ground long before the world’s first virus victim gave their first cough and splutter.
As a long-time operator in the world of business Down Under I have been appalled at how quickly Virgin was well and truly rooted by the current crisis.
But fear not, the battler’s best mate Morrie is set to bring a world of business experience to the table to try to get things moving, or should I say flying, again.
You see, many years ago I bought the rights to the names of a couple of legends of the Australian skies, just in case a day like today arrived and I needed to do what I do best — put together a big deal with some key backers and public shareholders.
So rest assured if all goes well I’ll soon have you back disarming doors and cross-checking, whatever the hell that is.
While I bought two airline names I reckon the time is ripe to use them both on my planned new venture that should soon push the tired old “Flying Kangaroo” out of the way to become our nation’s international flag carrier.
Compass Ansett Airlines has a truly historic ring to it, doesn’t it? It evokes so much of our aviation heritage that just the mention of it will have all would-be travellers thinking that this airline IS history.
But as well as a great name, I’ve managed to strike a beaut deal with an aircraft broker based in Pakistan who can get his hands on a fleet of Boeing 737 Max jets dirt cheap.
Of course putting an airline deal together takes a bit of dosh so I’ve called on a few personal friends to get involved.
Good blokes like Alan Bond Jr, Laurie Connell Jr, and Christoper Skase have all said they’ll take a slice of the action. So that’s good news for everyone.
But we do need a lot more cash and a lot more shareholders before we can start hiring pilots, crew like your good self, and office and ground staff.
To that end I plan to set up a special phone line to take calls and register new shareholders. But even that will take a fair amount of dosh.
So I’m asking people like you with a vested interest in seeing jobs return to our skies to kick in to help get my plan off the ground — literally.
If you want to help, just send a donation — one or two Ks at the bare minimum — to my new fund and I’ll get things moving at my end.
Send a cheque to me via The Bug and make it out to Compass Ansett Shares Hotline.
Bugger it, to save your time and mine, just make it out to CASH.
I’ll be in touch.
Morrie Bezzle is chair of Kay Elle Emm Hostess Training College, chief executive of Emma Rates Halal Airline Foods Inc, and director of Cathy Pacific Air Freight Express.