A Silver Airways Saab 430B Plus

Silver Airways in dire need of financial assistance

Silver Airways has sent a letter to officials in Washington seeking “critical and immediate financial aid required in order for the airline to survive the most dire crisis the industry has ever faced and upon which whose continued operation depends.”

The Fort Lauderdale-based company operates 100 daily scheduled flights between gateways in Florida and The Bahamas. It is owned by Versa Capital Management, LLC, a Philadelphia-based private equity investment firm and in the summer of 2018 completed the acquisition of Seaborne Airlines, which is based in San Juan.

Silver is hardly alone in being buffeted by the coronavirus and travel restrictions. The CAPA Centre for Aviation, a consultancy, said most airlines in the world will be bankrupt by the end of May unless governments intervene, CNN reported.

Here is the text of the letter sent by Silver Airways CEO Steven A. Rossum to Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin, Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao, U.S. Senators Rick Scott and Marco Rubio and U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz:

On behalf of the 1,000 dedicated and hardworking aviation professionals of Silver Airways (based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida) and our subsidiary Seaborne Airlines, I am writing to enlist your assistance by way of potential aid noted by President Trump, Vice President Pence and Secretary Mnuchin that would provide significant financial assistance to commercial airlines in order to continue providing critical air transportation in the face of COVID-19. Immediate and direct assistance is both respectfully requested and required.

Our passenger bookings have dropped dramatically over the past month and we are experiencing an even greater and unprecedented decline in forward bookings each day and ever-increasing cancellations as citizens and visitors are encouraged not to travel. We had expected to carry over 1,000,000 passengers in 2020, but expect to fall far short of that target.

As an American regional airline that services the entire State of Florida, the Bahamas and the Caribbean, our airline and employees have already faced – and are continuing to recover from – numerous recent disasters of historic magnitude, including Hurricanes Maria, Irma and Dorian.

The jobs and livelihood of our loyal employees and passengers we provide air transportation for, including military, leisure and business travelers throughout the Southeast and Caribbean from our gateways in Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, are gravely at risk. In addition, we provide important service to key military markets, including Pensacola, Florida; Huntsville, Alabama; and Charleston, South Carolina, among others. And we provide valuable and consumer-friendly connecting service to our destinations from many of America’s most important passenger airlines, including United, JetBlue, American and Delta.

On behalf of Silver Airways’ 1,000 employees and hundreds of thousands of customers we serve annually, we are in dire need of any assistance you can provide that will allow us to continue flying and providing the safe, reliable air transportation that is critical to the Southeastern U.S., Bahamas and the Caribbean. We hope and trust you can be in a position to support this need.




Kevin Gale
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