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Former Hawaiian trustee getting shelled

HAL

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In an effort to keep the previous HA thread from becoming bigger than the Titanic, I'm starting this new one.

And it's also because I'm sitting in a warm glow of satisfaction after reading this article:

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/9487766/

I know we've been saying 'told-you-so' for a couple years, but it is nice to finally see it in print.

Among the gems here are,

In documents filed with a bankruptcy judge last week, Gotbaum is described as greedy, arrogant and unpleasant, a showboat who took credit for the work of others and inflated the cost of the bankruptcy by dragging it out.
These descriptions don't just come from the unions and the creditors with whom Gotbaum tangled. Some of the harshest criticism comes from the federal trustee who appointed him and from Hawaiian Airlines employees, including CEO Mark Dunkerley, who worked closely with him.

and;

Katzman is among those who say that Gotbaum benefited greatly from the work done by the coterie of top-drawer experts and consultants he hired. These professionals, 18 firms total, charged the airline more than $30 million for their expertise. "In fact, much of the credit for the list of accomplishments cited by [Gotbaum] in his application should go to those professionals," Katzman said. "In determining a reasonable fee for the trustee, the court should consider the magnitude of high-priced assistance the trustee enjoyed." Also, most of the business decisions regarding the airline's operations were made by then-Chief Operating Officer Dunkerley and the airline's management team with little or no input from Gotbaum, according to the airline's court filings.

and finally, a little dose of Gotbaum's 'business sense';

The airline, which for years had struggled with inefficiencies because it had to operate separate interisland and domestic terminals, wanted the state's help in consolidating its operations under one roof. In July 2004, Gotbaum wrote a strongly worded letter to this effect, adding that the state wasn't recognizing Hawaiian's economic contributions and ending with a citing of a clause that would allow Hawaiian to terminate its lease at Honolulu International Airport. In a terse reply, the state said it considered the letter the 60-day notice that the airline was breaking its lease. Dunkerley and Norman Davies Jr., executive vice president of operations, rushed in to control the damage. They said they scrambled to meet with Rod Haraga, state director of transportation, and Davis Yogi, the airports administrator, and explained the episode as a misunderstanding. In his statement, Davies said: "In my opinion, Gotbaum's meetings with government officials did not improve relations with the state of Hawaii or with the [Federal Aviation Administration]; if anything, his meetings actually harmed Hawaiian Airlines' relationships with regulatory agencies."

Hello McFly! You're called Hawaiian airlines. Where else other than HNL do you really think you'll be operating?

I truly hope Gotbaum gets zilch from the courts. He was already overpaid to begin with. He doesn't deserve a penny more.

HAL
 

mdanno808

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That guy's an A$$hole, and I hope he steps in front of a bus.
 

Jim

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Far Cry from $8 million...

Gotbaum should get $250,000, Judge says
Advertiser Staff
Josh Gotbaum, Hawaiian Airlines former bankruptcy trustee, should receive a $250,000 bonus instead of the $8 million he requested, according to a tentative ruling issued today by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Robert Faris.
Faris is scheduled to hold a hearing tomorrow on Gotbaum's request.
In a filing today, Faris said that Gotbaum should receive the $1.153 million in salary that he has already been paid; $276,000 in housing, automobile and other expenses; and a $250,000 bonus. Several parties in Hawaiian's bankruptcy case have argued that Gotbaum should receive no bonus.
http://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/2005/Oct/26/br/br17p.html
 

mdanno808

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It's still too much if you ask me, but it sure as hell beats 8 million. I still hope the guy meets with an unfortunate accident.
 

Dan Roman

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Now the next step is for the unions and the company to band together and sue HIM for damages he caused by dragging out the BK and interfering with the negoitiations with the unions.
 

Erndogg

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Now the next step is for the unions and the company to band together and sue HIM for damages he caused by dragging out the BK and interfering with the negoitiations with the unions.

Dan,
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I remember him saying that our stock would be worthless at the time.
Not long after that HAL's stock soared to new hieghts.
Can you sue him for misleading us? I personally dumped all my stock because of this only to get shafted later.
 

islandhopper

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mdanno808 said:
It's still too much if you ask me, but it sure as hell beats 8 million. I still hope the guy meets with an unfortunate accident.

I hope he takes the money, goes on a nice vacation to Indonesia and contracts malaria, then while in his hospital bed maybe he can choke on the food. Yeah im with you guys. This asshole deserves no less!

Hey were walking today down on Restaurant Row. Drive by and honk your horn! http://starbulletin.com/2005/10/27/business/story01.html
 

HAL

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Erndogg said:
Can you sue him for misleading us?

I would love to see it happen although I doubt there's a legal leg to stand on. I too dumped my entire load of HA stock at about 90 cents per share because Gotbaum said it would be worthless. A few months later it was approaching $8 a share. If it was just Guttbum spouting off, I don't think there's a chance we'll go anywhere with it. However if any of the company officials (or anyone involved with Guttbum) made a big profit by hanging on to the shares and selling them after he said they were worthless, then there's a big SEC violation coming up for him.

HAL

"Lets light this candle!" - Alan Shepard
 

RJP

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Nicely Done Ha!!!

Great to see that Guttbomb got diddly poo after asking for such a ridiculous amount. Maybe, just maybe, this is a milestone that will be used in the future to keep the white-collar greed in check legally. One can only hope.

Islandhopper, best of luck today walking the line. Why not at the airport?
 

RJP

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Sorry, we may have cheered too soon....

LATEST NEWS

Pacific Business News (Honolulu) - 2:56 PM HST Thursday

Judge delays Gotbaum decision

Prabha Natarajan

Bankruptcy Judge Robert Faris says the $8 million bonus that former Hawaiian Airlines Trustee Joshua Gotbaum wants is too much, but he admits that it's not easy deciding on the right amount.

Faris told attendees at a court hearing Thursday that he would issue a written order in response to Gotbaum's request for a success fee.

Gotbaum, the court-appointed trustee during the airline's bankruptcy, is asking for the so-called success fee in addition to his salary and living expenses.

Before Thursday's hearing, Faris had issued a tentative ruling that identified a $250,000 "enhancement" to Gotbaum's monthly $50,000 salary and $10,000 in living expenses. Faris said he would revisit that ruling and issue a final order.

The $250,000 tentative award appeared to please most of the stakeholders attending Thursday's hearing, including the airline's unions and its parent company, Hawaiian Holdings.

However, Bruce Bennett, Gotbaum's attorney, argued against the $250,000 amount, saying it would not be fair compensation for the kind of work the trustee did.

Gotbaum attended the hearing but didn't comment.

Steve Katzman, the U.S. trustee who hired Gotbaum, said the $250,000 figure was too low and offered three alternatives:

Double Gotbaum's $60,000-a-month pay package as a bonus, equivalent to $1.4 million. Compensation then would total $2.83 million.

Pay Gotbaum $400 an hour, equivalent to the wages paid to former Liberty House executive John Monahan during the few months he occupied the trustee's job. This would total $2.275 million for the two years on top of the $1.43 million salary.

Pay Gotbaum $70,000 a month, an initially agreed-upon amount by the airline's stakeholders that the U.S. Trustee's Office reduced. This would total $1.886 million.

In arguing for the increase in compensation, Katzman said this case could become a deciding factor when it comes to his office's ability to contract talented people.

He admitted that initially he was put off by Gotbaum's request and the manner in which he made his claims.

"But we told him we would be fair," Katzman said. "The amount we propose as compensation is reasonable considering the responsibility and results, which are far more favorable given the economic model we are facing [in the airline industry]."
 

HAL

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Good! Gutless is gone, and good riddance. Now that the last vestige of the bankruptcy era is gone, maybe Dunkerley & co. can really focus on where they need to be, and where the airline should be going: More planes, more routes.

On a side note, did anyone post anything here about Mesa's 'fare structure'? You gotta love this quote from the Mesa press release:

Without having to subsidize unprofitable trans-Pacific service on the shoulders of the inter-island passengers, Mesa can offer very attractive fares to our Hawaiian customers.

Gee, I kind of thought that it was the other way around - that the trans-pac flying made the dough, while the interisland is just squeaking out a minimal profit. Also, that profit is made with 100+ seats per plane and a lot of cargo. What kind of profit does Mesa expect to make with 50-pax RJ's with no cargo capacity? And what kind of numb-nuts makes a claim like this and expects to be taken seriously??? All anyone has to do is look up the financial results for Hawaiian for the last few years and they'll see where Mesa is just blowing smoke up our okole.

HAL
 

mdanno808

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HAL said:
Good! Gutless is gone, and good riddance. Now that the last vestige of the bankruptcy era is gone, maybe Dunkerley & co. can really focus on where they need to be, and where the airline should be going: More planes, more routes.

On a side note, did anyone post anything here about Mesa's 'fare structure'? You gotta love this quote from the Mesa press release:

Without having to subsidize unprofitable trans-Pacific service on the shoulders of the inter-island passengers, Mesa can offer very attractive fares to our Hawaiian customers.

Gee, I kind of thought that it was the other way around - that the trans-pac flying made the dough, while the interisland is just squeaking out a minimal profit. Also, that profit is made with 100+ seats per plane and a lot of cargo. What kind of profit does Mesa expect to make with 50-pax RJ's with no cargo capacity? And what kind of numb-nuts makes a claim like this and expects to be taken seriously??? All anyone has to do is look up the financial results for Hawaiian for the last few years and they'll see where Mesa is just blowing smoke up our okole.
HAL

These idiot's obviously have no clue what they are talking about. Every statement they make verges on delusional.
 

islandhopper

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HAL said:
Good! Gutless is gone, and good riddance. Now that the last vestige of the bankruptcy era is gone, maybe Dunkerley & co. can really focus on where they need to be, and where the airline should be going: More planes, more routes.

On a side note, did anyone post anything here about Mesa's 'fare structure'? You gotta love this quote from the Mesa press release:

Without having to subsidize unprofitable trans-Pacific service on the shoulders of the inter-island passengers, Mesa can offer very attractive fares to our Hawaiian customers.

Gee, I kind of thought that it was the other way around - that the trans-pac flying made the dough, while the interisland is just squeaking out a minimal profit. Also, that profit is made with 100+ seats per plane and a lot of cargo. What kind of profit does Mesa expect to make with 50-pax RJ's with no cargo capacity? And what kind of numb-nuts makes a claim like this and expects to be taken seriously??? All anyone has to do is look up the financial results for Hawaiian for the last few years and they'll see where Mesa is just blowing smoke up our okole.

HAL
Actually Mesa is claiming they have been offered COMAIRS RJ-200's VERY cheap and run them in Hawaii and elsewhere. Ornstien was bragging to our atty that he could make three round trips a day per aircraft and make money!

They don't care about cargo or the local market. Mesa is just interested in seeing Aloha burn, and making a last shot at our operating certificate in a Ch7 liquidation or 363 asset sale. Everybody knows what Mesa is up to. While we are preparing for his arrival with everything we got, we are fairly certain if AQ settles with their pilots and FA's that Mesa will go away.
 

islandhopper

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Look, not to frighten anybody with that rumor.... Mesa is full of $hit. OK cheap RJ-200's on their way to Mojave are one thing but he claims to be replacing the RJ-200's with larger 700 & 900 series canadairs in Hawaii and thats BULL$HIT. No way hes coming in with brand new metal at those published fares.
 

HAL

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Comparing FlyI to Mesa

FlyI just entered chapter 11 bankruptcy. They were a relatively profitable low cost regional that tried to expand into being an independent airline. Now they're essentially liquidating the airline after having burned through a quarter billion dollars cash. Compare what is being said about FlyI to what Mesa is about to attempt:

From a Securities Analyst: "We did not believe that FLYI's model of using regional jets as a low-cost airline was ever feasible," he wrote, because of the relatively high cost of operating a regional jet. "The only way we saw any potential value for stockholders was if the company went back to being a regional feeder airline."

Also said of FlyI: "Their fare pricing was desperate to say the least, and even Joe Leonard from Airtran said the Indy pricing was "Irresponsible.""

The two cases seem quite similiar. Mesa is attempting what ACA did by becoming FlyI, and I'd guess the results will be the same. So does the world end if Mesa enters the Hawaii market? Probably not. Will Mesa enter the market? I'd say yes, because Ornstein is just that stubborn. Will Mesa fail and leave? Almost certainly yes, given the planes they're proposing and the fiercely loyal market in Hawaii.

HAL

P.S. We furloughees are not happy with the loss of Saturday News Talk!
 

mdanno808

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I am not happy with the vacancy bid that was just released either. 14 excess pilot's until March 2006? Sucks to be us.
 
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