Aircraft firm hit by crisis in Russia, judge told

An aircraft maintenance firm employing 235 workers at Shannon is unable to meet its debts because of the economic difficulties currently being experienced in Russia and by its Russian parent company, the High Court was told yesterday.

Mr Justice Bernard Barton appointed Grant Thornton chartered accountant Michael McAteer as interim examiner to Transaero Engineering Ireland (TEI), a globally approved maintenance, repair and aircraft overhaul company.

Barrister James Doherty told the court that Transaero Engineering Ireland, which had a turnover of €27m in 2010/11, was an Irish-registered company which had been generating relatively modest profit and had been taken over by Transaero Airlines in 2012.

Mr Doherty said increased pressures had been put on Transaero Engineering Ireland’s profitability by its parent company which had required it to carry out work for it on a cost-only basis which had eaten into its profits.

“Its immediate difficulties have been caused by the economic difficulties in Russia and its parent company which is no longer in a position to support the Shannon-based firm.

“As a result the company is in a position where it is unlikely to be able to pay its debts as they fall due.”

Mr Doherty said the company was seeking the appointment of an interim examiner to stabilise its position and give comfort to employees that their situation is being protected in the short term.

He said that during the 10-week period of court protection against any potential predatory creditor, Mr McAteer would be attempting to put together a rescue scheme of arrangement which would hopefully ensure the survival of the company as a going concern.

Mr Doherty said an independent accountant’s report on the company had given it a reasonable prospect of survival and there had already been some discussions with a potential investor which would be taken up by Mr McAteer immediately after his appointment by the court.

He said the company was a very significant enterprise with an international reputation and in any rescue plan the relationship with its highly specialist technical employees would be vital.

Shannon Airport Authority Plc was the main creditor and other creditors, including Boeing, for which TEI did a lot of work, would be put on notice of the appointment of the interim examiner.


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