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US-based MESA Air Group puts an offer to Flybe

Flybe at Cardiff Airport (The Aviation Media Agency)

Flybe at Cardiff Airport (The Aviation Media Agency)

In what could be yet another blow to the plan to sell Flybe to Connect Airways, a group led by Stobart Group and Virgin Atlantic, MESA Air Group has submitted an offer to the board.

The consortium led by Bateleur Capital and Mesa Air Group is understood to have offered a deal including a cash injection, new debt facilities which would be worth around £120m to the struggling airline, but is conditional on the proposed sale to Connect Airways is abandoned.

According to Sky News, sources have said that £65m of new equity would be injected at a price of about 4.5p-a-share, making the bid significantly higher than that of the Stobart/Virgin consortium which offered 1p per share.

MESA Air provides regional flights in the US on behalf of American Airlines and United Airlines.

The Flybe board will now consider this latest offer which is understood to have the support of Hosking Partners, who have already tried to block the Connect Airways deal, and Andrew Tinkler. Between them, they own 30% of Flybe.

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