Baltia/USGlobal Airways Changes Their Business Plan… Again

This is just so amusing to me that I can’t not write about it. For those of you not familiar with USGlobal Airways, until recently they were known as Baltia Air Lines, the oldest airline startup that never took to the skies. Here’s the latest update, which I suspect shouldn’t come as much of a surprise.

Background on Baltia & USGlobal Airways

In 2014 I first wrote about Baltia Air Lines, which is America’s oldest startup airline. They’ve been in “business” for almost 30 years, except they’ve never actually flown a commercial flight, despite having owned a 747-200 for over 20 years (which they finally dumped last year, after hiring a consultant who told them it might not be the ideal plane with which to launch an airline — who would’ve thought?!).

Their business plan was initially to fly between New York and St. Petersburg, Russia, with plans to later expand to other European capitals. For years Baltia had been pretending that they were actually going to start flying some day soon. Bizarrely enough, some people actually believed it, as the airline had a market cap of $70 million in 2014.

Finally early last year the SEC filed charges against one of Baltia’s executives, who was accused of misleading investors.

After this shakeup, the airline came up with a new business plan. Rather than flying a 747 between New York and Eastern Europe, they’d instead become a regional airline within the United States, and fly between BALtimore, Trenton, Islip, and Albany.

But then they changed their mind again, and late last year Baltia signed a letter of intent with Kalitta to lease a 767-300. This February they announced that they planned to change their name, execute a reverse stock split, and trade under a new ticker symbol. So Baltia’s new name is USGlobal Airways.

USGlobal Airways was going to acquire Songbird

In July I had the chance to speak with USGlobal Airways’ VP of Corporate Communications, which was… interesting.

At the time, USGlobal Airways’ latest plan was to purchase Songbird Airways, a charter airline based in Florida with one 737-400. The plan was to buy the airline for $6.2 million, and the logic was that it would be easier and faster to take over Songbird’s operating certificate than to actually get their own.

They said that they would then be able to immediately begin revenue flying with a 737-400, and planned to start service to Caribbean Islands, and also start charter operations both domestically and internationally. Their goal continued to be to fly 767s across the Atlantic, so eventually they wanted to retire the 737 and start 767 operations. At least that was the claim.

USGlobal Airways isn’t going to acquire Songbird after all

USGlobal Airways said that their acquisition of Songbird would close by October at the latest. It’s now December, and there’s an update. USGlobal Airways has stated that they won’t be acquiring Songbird after all. The only shocking part of this announcement is that they only left investors hanging for a month, rather than a decade. Per a press release from yesterday:

On Wednesday, November 29th, the company filed an 8k stating that our agreement to purchase Songbird Airways has been terminated. While we understand this may come as disappointing news, this move is a result of our continued effort to ensure the executive management team is making the best decisions possible for this company and its shareholders over the long-term. We are keen on moving in a direction which will expedite the generation of revenue and profitability for this company, and continue to explore the existing opportunities which will allow us to do so. Our Board of Directors met yesterday and unanimously decided to move forward with our revised approach. Due to the confidentiality of the relevant parties, we cannot go into more detail at this time.

With your interests at heart, and so much at stake, we will not take any action if we are not 100% confident it is best for the company and for you. It is this frame of mind that motivated our decision to pursue an alternative to Songbird.

We believe this decision is in the best interest of our shareholders and everyone who has worked non-stop to make this company successful. I want to thank our investors for their confidence and trust in our team. We will be announcing more details about the new direction in the coming weeks.

So USGlobal is no longer acquiring Songbird because they’re not “100% confident it is best for the company,” and they will be “announcing more details about the new direction in the coming weeks.”

Yet USGlobal Airways continues to have investors who believe that the airline will fly any day. Unbelievable…

Comments

  1. “We are keen on moving in a direction which will expedite the generation of revenue and profitability for this company”
    ???
    What “revenue generation”? Anyone ever seen any revenue reported in 20 years?
    I guess there is enough funny-money among well-heeled for this to float for long, long time.

  2. Hahahahaha, funniest shit ever. Taking a page out of Trump’s playbook, “We will be announcing more details about the new direction in the coming weeks”, believe me 🙂

  3. While I appreciate the updates on Baltia/USGlobal and do find the situation humorous, at best, why do you insist on spending so much time and energy on continually bashing this company? It doesn’t take a genius to know that the company will never get off the ground, but why are you so obsessed with pointing out the flaws? I could see you wanting to expose the company for being a scam/fraud if they canceled their flight you were booked on at the last minute and left you stranded.

    I typically don’t mind a vendetta against a company that has done you wrong or scorned you in some way. Unless I’m wrong, they’ve actually gone out of their way to try and convince you this company will actually have planes flying at some point in the future? Updates are fine if they’re more informative in nature; however, your updates are so hellbent on exposing USGlobal and its employees for being the scum of the Earth. If someone is crazy enough to fly them one day (depending on whether they actually acquire a plan, crew, etc.) without doing their research, that’s on them.

    Your outlook on USGlobal reminds me of the current season of Real Housewives of Atlanta, particularly Kim. Her only motive for coming back (other than a check) is to take down Kenya. There’s already enough negativity in the world, so your blog could do without the constant criticism and shade being thrown at USGlobal Airways, no? I just think you’re better than this.

  4. please keep a tab on these guys! love your continued coverage of this company and what other tricks they have up their sleeves.

  5. I love these random articles on BALTIA – I think it’s so ridiculous and the fact that they file 8Ks, as they’re a listed entity is just wild.

  6. Fortunately the DOT found Baltia unfit during their review of their application to acquire Songbird’s certificate.

    As a deal sweetener, Aerline got to keep the $1,000,000.00 Purchase Deposit.

  7. Ben, you are an idiot. You just gobbled up whatever is thrown at you and write about without any research. Over half the stuff you wrote is made up! Regional airline? Are you that stupid? It was NEVER presented as a plan by the former company.

    By the way, you are a laughing stock in the avaiton industry. Read your other articles….you are just a wanna be douche.

  8. @Karen… the lady doth protest too much, methinks.

    Be honest, how is life on the Baltia payroll treating you?

  9. @Karen – so you wouldn’t call an airline flying between Baltimore, Trenton, Islip, and Albany a regional airline?

    @Chris – Ben spends time (probably not much, but some) bashing Baltia, or US Global, or whatever they’ll be called next week, because it’s just sad to see these people continue to delude themselves (or anyone they try to sell stock to) that they actually have a viable business plan. It’s just like the way the deluded team that kept trying to start production of an upgraded Fokker100 were bashed for years on airliners.net..at first you kind of wanted them to succeed, but it just got pathetic after a while.

    And Baltia is even stranger than Rekkof was – they bought a 747 and let it sit for OVER 20 YEARS. You’d think somewhere in there the little light that says “wow, this is really stupid!” would have come on.

    So we mock because the total lack of anything resembling business (or common) sense creates a vacuum that must be filled.

  10. @Karen and @Chris, you both come across as having skin in the game with that verging on fraudulent pretend airline. I think it would make a fabulous case study for a show like 60 Minutes.
    @Ben, keep up the great articles 🙂

  11. @OceanRain17, agree. I can’t believe there are any legitimate investors remaining (inside the US at least). Would be amazed if this was not functioning as a vehicle for laundering cash.

    These updates are hilarious and informative, thanks Lucky!

  12. They even went as far as hiring people on the songbird deal knowing they could not pay them and never mentioned it to the new folks. Tony, Sheryl, are a joke…I would urge everyone out there with bogus checks, promises, and anything in writing to seek legal counsel in collection. The aviation industry has kept them from operating as an airline because they are not fit to do so, perhaps state, federal, and local laws could keep them from continuing the scams they are running. Someone has to be responsible for the fraud and actions of the officers of this company. Oh yeah, the favorite saying is “we will have funding next week”. If they ever saw any funding, it went in somebody’s pocket before paying employees.

  13. Well, its finally over. SEC has suspended trading on BLTA. Yet still, there are believers that somehow they’ll come back from this “setback.” Truly unbelievable.

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