Airline CityJet has confirmed it will no longer be pursuing negotiations over the potential acquisition of Stobart Air.

The firm has told Stobart Air’s parent company Stobart Group its will not be operating its services from Southend Airport but said it still has expansion plans.

CityJet executive chairman and chief executive Pat Byrne said: “In my experience, most significant corporate transactions have a certain life and, if completion is not reached within that window, the dynamics shift and people tend to move on. Naturally, we are very disappointed as we have been highly motivated to try to finalise this deal. We saw Stobart Air as a really good fit for our growing business.”

“The process became protracted over several months and, in the circumstances, we presented Stobart with a deadline for completion. The deadline lapsed this morning and, consequently, we have withdrawn from the process. It is unfortunate that it has not been possible to reach agreement with Stobart.

“CityJet will continue to develop our aggressive growth strategy in Europe but regrettably this will not now include the acquisition of Stobart Air.”