VLM Airlines in bad weather again? (update)
The Antwerp based airline company VLM Airlines opens two new destinations, Munich and Maribor. Behind the scenes however, there are worries about the Chinese investors pulling the plug.
Yves Panneels, spokesman for VLM, reacts that there are no threats currently of the Chinese investors stepping out, on the contrary. “We wouldn’t be opening new lines if we were not confident that we can do the investments”, he declares. VLM Airlines opened a connection to Zürich in the beginning of the year and now adds Munich and Maribor to its portfolio.
Changes at the top
It’s not the first time that the management of VLM Airlines changes quickly. In October last year CEO Harm Prins had to leave, in his place came Karl Rickard, but he wasn’t present at the opening of the Maribor connection in Antwerp. Rumours are that he has already left.
Yves Panneels, spokesman for VLM Airlines, denies this: “All plans for the coming season will be executed, starting the 26th of March we will even offer two daily flights to Munich and the connection with Birmingham will start very soon.”
“The reason some top managers weren’t present in Antwerp was that we had to divide the managing personnel over the different locations. We can assure you the CEO is still on board’, adds Panneels.
The plans of VLM Airlines were very ambitious, this spring they wanted to start flights to Shenzhen in China, but competition is fierce. “VLM is still waiting for a licence for the Airbus A330 planes. Plans to fly to China had to be postponed a few months”, explains Panneels.
At the inauguration of the Maribor connection COO Carl Runge denied the possible financial problems and pointed at the ambitions. First thing to do: fill the planes. That’s why you can buy a ticket to Munich for 19 euro, one way.