Tag Archives: Yucuipa

Mesa Air Group/Aloha/ Update: Bankruptcy Judge Says “Not So Fast”


I’m sorry dear readers.

I should have posted this news yesterday. Wednesday, actually.

But I did not want to have to be forced to type the word “MESA” on my birthday. Or even 24 hours ahead of my birthday.

I’m sure you can understand.

But now it is Friday, so here it is.

As we wrote here the other day, Mesa announced last week that it had cut a deal with the major shareholder of Aloha Airlines that would see that shareholder, Yucaipa Cos. receive a rather sweet deal in return for the rights to the Aloha Airlines trademarks, names, logos, internet presence, corporate identity items, etc. Actually the extent of the deal was not made clear until Mesa posted an SEC filing on Monday, but, well, you can read our post on all of it here.

The only catch was that Yucaipa would need to be the highest bidder at the scheduled auction for the rights to these items, which was scheduled for Tuesday.

Tuesday, the auction took place, and Yucaipa did indeed beat out all comers, including Hawaiian Airlines, bidding $750,000 for the rights to the name. Hawaiian’s all-cash bid was $575,000, which was the required overbid after Yucaipa had initiated the auction process as the so-called “stalking horse” with a bid of $525,000.

But then a funny thing happened on the way to Mesa getting the right to use the Aloha name. And the livery. And everything else.

The deal was temporarily blocked by the federal Bankruptcy Court judge who is presiding over the case.

Judge Lloyd King postponed the scheduled hearing on the licensing pact between Mesa and Yucaipa Cos. until Feb. 19 to give supporters and opponents of the deal more time to respond.

“How about all the people whose lives were devastated in this case?” asked King, noting that Mesa and go! are largely blamed for Aloha’s demise. “Doesn’t that count? Is it just the money?”

“I don’t think anyone is sensitive who’s involved in this settlement,” King said. “If this isn’t approved, are people from Yucaipa going to lose their health benefits and their jobs? There hasn’t been enough time for people to react.”

He said that the extra time would give both supporters and opponents more time to respond.

You know, that’s the thing about those federal bankruptcy judges. You just never know what they are going to do. And sometimes — this turns out to be a good thing.

I guess there’s a Santa Claus after all.