I have no vested interest in this, and I have a huge amount of sympathy for you and your fellow shareholders. I'm sure that to some of you the loss will cause barely a ripple in the personal finances, but I'm equally sure that for some of you the loss will be ruinous. Its a regretful situation, but we are where we are and it is difficult to see another option (some of my thoughts are below).
A company which is party to the buyout was offering 40 times more per share just a few months ago.
If that is so, the directors presumably recommended that the shareholders not accept the offer. I suspect the shareholders agreed, presumably holding out for a higher price and with hindsight this looks like a poor decision. However, BE is/was a public company whose shares were freely traded on an exchange and therefore any shareholder who wanted to sell at that price I'm sure they could have done so.
Either way, that offer is not on the table now (possibly because the BE finances has materially deteriorated since the previous offer and Connect injected £20million to keep the lights on).
Now they are part of a consortium who appear to have shared notes despite NDAs being in place and buying it at a penny a share.
If they did share notes, they were presumably the same notes as I assume BE would have disclosed the same material to each of the individual parties. If they have acted in concert to drive the price down that is one thing, but it seems that BE is in serious financial trouble, in which case 1p per share doesn't feel like a disaster for a business that has been borrowing against its assets and needed a capital injection to keep operating.
The Board of Directors couldn't parley the 10 or so million passengers per year in to some some sort of goodwill premium. They couldn't get the intangible assets like a brandname and booking engine in to a price premium. A bunch of monkeys could have done better.
Perhaps they could have done better, perhaps not. Of course the plan is to use the VS brand and presumably the booking system also.
The board of directors' obligations are to the shareholders. The only obligations they have to creditors and society is not to trade recklessly rather than ensuring that the creditors are made whole. Creditors take it upon themselves to ensure they give credit only to customers who can pay their bills.
Their obligations to their employees are only those which are specified by law.
Like it or not, the directors of an insolvent company do have duties to creditors.
Of course, even if the directors put the company into administration, the secured creditors would get paid their dues before the shareholders, and if the company is actually insolvent the shareholders would get nothing in that scenario. I suspect that the £20million advanced by connect is secured and entitles them to appoint an administrator who will presumably allow them to cherry pick the bits they want.
If there was no worth in FlyBE the share price of Stobart would not have increased when the deal to purchase FlyBE was announced.
Share prices are based on perception, speculation, hopes and fears.
I don't think it is indicative of the underlying merits of a particular transaction, just the market's perception at a given moment in time (which was that the price was lower than expected, apparently because BE was teetering on the brink)