Swedish electronics chain ONOFF bankrupt

Swedish home electronics chain ONOFF filed for bankruptcy on Monday, citing stiff competition, price pressure, and low profits.

Swedish electronics chain ONOFF bankrupt

“Several cost rationalisation programs have been carried out simultaneously, and we’ve had negotiations with several interested parties about selling or merging the company. Negotiations have gone far, but unfortunately haven’t lead to any finalised deal,” the firm wrote in a statement released on Monday.

ONOFF was founded in 1982, and today the company has 67 stores in Sweden, six in Estonia and one store in Finland.

“It’s very unfortunate for all ONOFF employees, but also for suppliers and customers. It’s our hope that the negotiations we conducted this spring will lead to at least some parts of ONOFF continuing to operate,” said Sten Schröder, partner and chairman of the board, in the statement.

Jessica Wallin, press officer at rival store Elgiganten, has also noted the extremely stiff competition, declining prices and small margins that have been the rule in the Swedish home electronics market for years.

“It’s not surprising to see one player disappear,” she said to news agency TT.

Wallin doesn’t believe that ONOFF’s bankruptcy will have much of an effect on Elgiganten, which is still able to turn a profit.

“We’re going to continue lowering prices, investing in customer service and making sure our customers feel secure.”

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Norwegian’s subsidiaries in Denmark and Sweden go bankrupt

The struggling low-cost airline Norwegian has reported its staffing subsidiaries in Denmark and Sweden have filed for bankruptcy, meaning roughly three quarters of its pilots and crew will lose their jobs.

Norwegian's subsidiaries in Denmark and Sweden go bankrupt
A Norwegian Air Shuttle plane: Photo: Norwegian

In a press release issued on Monday afternoon, the airline said that the financial support packages offered by the Swedish and Danish government had not been sufficiently generous to keep the subsidiaries which employ pilots and cabin crew in the two countries solvent. 

”The impact the Coronavirus has had on the airline industry is unprecedented. We have done everything we can to avoid making this last-resort decision and we have asked for access to government support in both Sweden and Denmark”, said Norwegian's chief executive Jacob Schram in the statement.  

“Our pilots and cabin crew are the core of our business and they have done a fantastic job for many years.”

“It is heart-breaking that our Swedish and Danish pilot and cabin crew subsidiaries now are forced to file for bankruptcy, and I’m truly sorry for the consequences this will have for our colleagues,”  Norwegian's chief executive Jacob Schram said in the statement.  

“We are working around the clock to get through this crisis and to return as a stronger Norwegian with the goal of bringing as many colleagues back in the air as possible.”

The company said it was also immediately ending staffing deals with the OSM Aviation, which supplies it with crew based in Spain, UK, Finland, Sweden and the US.

The company said that 1,571 pilots and 3,134 cabin crew would be affected by the move, with only the 700 pilots and 1,300 cabin crew based in Norway, France and Italy being kept on.

In the release, the company blamed the “the lack of significant financial support” from the Swedish and Danish governments, which it contrasted with that of Norway, which has agreed to pay “all salary related costs” while staff are furloughed. 

The companies declared bankrupt include: 
Norwegian Pilot Services Sweden AB
Norwegian Pilot Services Denmark ApS
Norwegian Cabin Services Denmark ApS
Norwegian Air Resources Denmark LH ApS