Airline: Héli Inter Riviera declares bankruptcy and strikes back

Posté lun 15/10/2001 - 00:00
Par admin

The Héli Inter subsidiary on the French Riviera, which keeps on working, has lodged a complaint its Monegasque competitor Héli Air Monaco for unfair competition.

Is there enough place for two helicopter companies on the airport plat-form of Nice-Côte d'Azur ? Can a French helicopter company find a place, economically speaking, near the Monegasque company Héli Air Monaco ? As Héli Inter Riviera has just declared bankruptcy, the question is set again.A new war of companiesIt already occurred in the beginning of the 90's with the fall of the Héli Transport company. This liquidation resulted from a long judicial battle. Jean-Claude Van Latem, the CEO of Héli Transport, had accused the Monegasque company of not having respected the bilateral agreements between France and Monaco. Then, he also made a claim against the French State for not having made the law respected, which, according to him, had led to the "plundering of the French market". He had been particularly listened to in this battle.The Héli Inter Riviera case seems to go the same way of a battle against Héli Air Monaco, since bilateral agreements would not have been respected. In Nice Matin of October Sunday 14th, Claude D'Albronn, the CEO of Héli Inter Riviera, was particularly clear as he was interviewed by François Rosso. "I have never been able to implement my traffic rights because the market is plundered and if the market is not plundered that's because the law is not respected", he declares. Claude D'Albronn has already lodged a complaint for fraud and violation of the rules of the civil aviation code.A market too small for two ?It is true that there is a fierce competition on this top-of-the-range niche of air transport on the Riviera. On a market of more than 150.000 passengers per year between Monaco and Saint-Tropez, the Nice-Monaco line takes the lion's share with around 120.000 passengers per year. As for the unfair competition accusations, Jacques Crovetto, the CEO of Héli Air Monaco, keeps also the same defence speech as in the past: the market is too small for having two helicopter companies and the market game is again the reason for the fall of Héli Inter Riviera.It seems that this Héli Inter subsidiary, created in 1998 (turnover of 21 million francs 2000, 56 employees) doesn't want to give up. They want to bring an action in justice while they keep on working, since they have been authorised by the Commercial Court of Cannes for an observation period which lasts until April 2002. A case to be continued…

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