The board of flybe. (BE, Exeter) rejected the preliminary recapitalisation offer presented by the ex-CEO of Stobart Group William Andrew Tinkler and emphasised it still believed that the Connect Airways bid was the best path for the struggling regional carrier.

"The Board understands that the capital injection under the Preliminary Proposal would only be provided by Mr Tinkler if the sale of flybe.'s operating businesses to Connect Airways Limited in accordance with the share purchase agreement dated 15 January 2019 does not complete. The Board does not consider that the Preliminary Proposal offers the certainty required to secure the future of flybe.", the carrier said in a regulatory filing on February 4, 2019.

flybe. underlined that Tinkler never made a formal proposal and only "initial discussions" were held.

Meanwhile, the carrier also said that it had already received GBP15 million pounds (USD19.4 million) of the GBP20 million pound (USD25.9 million) bridge loan from Connect Airways, a consortium of Cyrus Capital, Stobart Group, and Virgin Atlantic.

"flybe. continues to work with Connect Airways on the sale of flybe.'s operating businesses. The SPA is subject to only a limited number of conditions and progress is being made to meet those conditions. The SPA is subject to a longstop date of 22 February 2019," the airline said.

The Connect Airways bid foresees an acquisition of all the company's assets for GBP2.8 million pounds (USD3.6 million) plus an extra up to GBP80 million pounds (USD103.5 million) in fresh capital injection after the completion of the transaction on top of the bridge loan. Following the conclusion of the deal, flybe. will distribute the proceeds from the sale to its shareholders and then wind down, transferring all assets to the new owners.

The bid is opposed by a number of flybe. shareholders, including the largest one Hosking Partners LLP, who deem the price too low.

In early January, Tinkler acquired a 12.23% stake in flybe. as an "investment decision".