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El-Al Suspends Operations Indefinitely

Airline Reportedly Lost $140 Million In The First Quarter

Israeli flag carrier, El Al, has suspended all operations as of July 1st... following a number of days of turmoil, magnified by a pilot action in which their union declared that the aviators would no longer fly for the company.

This follows a bad first quarter in which the airline reportedly lost $140 million in the first quarter versus the previous year's loss of $55 million over the same time the previous year. The airline's revenue also reportedly dropped 25% to $321 million. Operating losses also grew by 75% to some $93 million.

With COVID-19 literally grounding much of the world, the road was tough for El-Al as it was. Within hours of the union declaration, El Al CEO Gonen Usishkin put out an order affecting all aircraft, including cargo operations, to immediately return to Israel.

The carrier had previously suspended regular passenger/commercial flights to the end of July, but had until recently, expanded its cargo operations and reconfigured a number of its aircraft to accommodate those capabilities. Now, the carrier is canceling some leases and in the process of returning a number of leased aircraft

The workforce has been hard-hit as well... with only 110 of the airline's 650 pilots on flight status before this week's order. The rest of the staff have been similarly affected as 5,800 out of a total workforce of 6,300, were put on leave without pay.

FMI: www.elal.com

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