The Board of Directors of LCC Norwegian announced yesterday in a media release that the airline will cease long-haul operations and concentrate on growing its domestic short-haul services in the Nordics and Europe.
In December 2020, Norwegian's passenger numbers were down 94% year-on-year as the airline operated on average 9 aircraft, mainly on domestic routes in Norway.
Norwegian CEO Jacob Schram said in a statement:
“The pandemic continues to have a negative impact on our business as it has had since March 2020. At the beginning of last year, Norwegian was headed for a positive result in 2020, instead 2020 has been a very challenging year and we now find ourselves fighting for survival."
Under the new plan, Norwegian will fly short-haul routes using a reduced fleet (down from 140) of up to 50 narrow-body aircraft in 2021 - to be increased to 70 in 2022 - and to raise NOK 4-5B in new capital through a combination of a rights issue to current shareholders, a private placement and a hybrid instrument.
Because of COVID-19 travel restrictions, Norwegian's 787 Dreamliner fleet has been grounded since March 2020. Because future demand "remains uncertain," Norwegian has ended operations in Italy, France, the UK and the US and filed for bankruptcy protection in Ireland