German-Turkish airline SunExpress will move to close down its German subsidiary, in order to “bundle its traffic into one AOC” and focus on the Turkish market.
While SunExpress Turkey will continue operations, the closure of the company’s European hub will lead to the axing of some 1,200 jobs, said German news outlet Airliners.de.
Flights will officially come to a halt on 26 June 2020, at which point SunExpress Germany will enter liquidation.
SunExpress said at a shareholder meeting held Wednesday that the move was motivated by a slump in revenue associated with the coronavirus pandemic, noting that a “majority of the airline’s fleet was grounded between 2 April until 31 May”.
“The strategically appropriate decision to focus exclusively on our core business is also a bitter one,” added Max Kownatzki, chief executive of SunExpress.
“For all those affected, this is sad news, which was the result of a comprehensive and intensive evaluation of the situation. At the same time, this represents an important step for the future to strengthen the market position of SunExpress during the crisis and to emerge even stronger from the crisis.”
Kownatzki also said in addition to zeroing in on the Turkish domestic market, SunExpress will look to target Turkey-DACH international routes with a consolidated fleet and merged flight operations.
The company said that all those who have made bookings with SunExpress Germany have either been transferred onto a SunExpress Turkey flight, or rebooked with a partner airline such as Eurowings.