Published on Thursday, January 24, 2013
Regional airline Flybe has said that 'double' APD charges left it 'no choice' other than to cut hundreds of jobs.
The Exeter-based airline has announced 300 job cuts, which amount to 10% of the UK workforce and which will affect a fifth of its management team as well as support and production staff.
Flybe is also considering outsourcing ground handling and catering support to reach a reduction in costs of £35 million.
Andrew Knuckey, chief financial officer of Flybe, said wider economic pressures and the impact of air passenger duty hikes in recent years meant it 'had no choice' but to cut jobs to bring costs down.
The group claims it is hit particularly hard by air passenger duty, as it is charged both ways on UK domestic flights and accounts for 18% of its ticket revenues.
Flybe's three divisions will be replaced by two - Flybe UK which will cover all UK-based scheduled flight services and the new Flybe Outsourcing Solutions which will cover external contracts.
There will also be further automation at check-ins and fuel efficiency programmes.
The airline, which flies from airports including Bristol, Cardiff, Doncaster, Edinburgh and East Midlands, has not confirmed whether any of its routes will be affected.
Jim French, chairman and chief executive of Flybe, said: "It's a decision the board and I have not taken lightly; it's one we have tried to avoid and it is the first time in almost 30 years of business that we have had to take such action."
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