JetGo in debt up to $32m, thousands owed flight refunds

Ailing regional airline JetGo could have potential debt of up to $32 million, according to Shellharbour City Council staff who attended the company’s first creditors meeting.

Held on Wednesday morning in Brisbane, the three and a half hour meeting was attended by about 100 people with a number of other creditors – including Shelharbour and other councils, and the Australian Taxation Office – phoning in.

In a summary put together by Shellharbour’s general manger Carey McIntyre and the council’s governance manager, the council reported that JetGo had “confirmed total exposure is $17 million, with a potential total exposure of $32 million”.

They also said 10,000 customers were owed money, along with 200 unsecured creditors, 12 secured creditors and 112 employees. 

JetGo listed its assets as four aircraft, office equipment, assets at airports, two vehicles, and stock.

The Air Operating Certificate, which is granted by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority and gives permission to conduct commercial activities, was JetGo’s biggest asset, the council said.

Administrators are working to secure these assets.

After weeks of rumours about the airline’s cash shortages and debts – and court action from Dubbo Regional Council which requested the compnay to be wound up – Jetgo announced it would go into voluntary administration on June 1.

It immediately suspended all passenger flights, including those operating to Melbourne and Brisbane from the Illawarra Regional Airport.

At the time, managing director Paul Bredereck told the Mercury that he hoped the administration period would be “a temporary measure”.

Shellharbour council says it is owed about $420,000 in passenger taxes and unpaid security costs.

After Wednesday’s meeting, the council also reported that four parties expressed interest in putting together a proposal to take over JetGo.

Shellharbour council nominated to be a part of a committee of creditors which represents the interest of other parties owed money, however this nomination was not successful.

The next report from the administrators is due on June 27, with a second creditors’ meeting convened on July 6.

At this meeting, all creditors will vote either for liquidation of JetGo or deed of company administration.