NokScoot board of directors vote for liquidation of airline

The board of directors at NokScoot has decided to liquidate the company. NokScoot’s shareholders will deliberate the same at a General Meeting to be held in 14 days time. The airline is a Joint Venture between Scoot – a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines and Thailand based Nok Air. The airline started operations in 2014.

Thailand has been particularly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Early in the pandemic cycle, South East Asia was high on impact and had led to cancellations and this was followed by a complete travel ban across the world. A large portion of NokScoot’s revenue was dependent on inbound tourism from China – which was impacted for one or the other reason in the last two years.

NokScoot operated to Delhi four times a week from Bangkok Don Mueang. The airline has a fleet of seven B777-200ERs in two class configuration. There have been reports of NokScoot returning aircraft to lessors and laying off employees.

Nok Air owns 51% of NokScoot and is a low cost carrier based at Don Mueang International Airport, Bangkok. The airline operates a fleet of over 20 aircraft comprising the B737 and Q400. The airline had recently launched services to Guwahati, which were subsequently suspended.

Scoot owns 49% of NokScoot. Scoot is part of the Singapore Airlines group and is owned fully by Singapore Airlines. The airline started predominantly as a low cost arm of SIA and operated the older B777s of Singapore Airlines until the new B787s arrived. Subsequently Tiger Air was merged with Scoot. It uses “SCOOTER” as its call sign. Reports indicate that SIA will record a SGD 123.6 million one-off charge due to this liquidation.

Thailand is a very tough market for airlines with many airlines competing for the large tourist market as well as being a hub for connections India and China to other parts of South East Asia. This includes two airlines from the AirAsia group, two from Thai Airways, two from Nok Air group and a subsidiary of Lion Air and Vietjet, with an independent Bangkok Air as well.

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