Lufthansa spreads its wings to bid for struggling Italian airline

Cornelia Mascio
Ottobre 17, 2017

Lufthansa did not reveal details of its offer but said it hopes to establish a "new Alitalia".

Easyjet said it had submitted an expression of interest "in certain assets of a restructured Alitalia".

The tender offer made clear that bankruptcy administrators want to avoid a fire sale of Alitalia assets, giving preference to any offer that takes on the entire airline, which has 8,000 aviation employees, including pilots and flight attendants, and an additional 3,600 on the ground.

On Monday, the last of 110,000 Monarch customers who were overseas when the airline collapsed were flown home, according to the United Kingdom aviation regulator.

The government also announced a further €300 million in loans to keep the carrier flying.

Lufthansa agreed a €210m (£190m) deal for parts of Air Berlin last week, with EasyJet also in talks to buy parts of the failed carrier. The deadline for the repayment of the loan from May was extended from November of this year to September 2018.

The Italian government further extended the deadline for the sale of struggling flagship air carrier Alitalia, even as reports surfaced that Germany's Lufthansa offered to pay 500 million euros (600 million USA dollars) as part of a plan to take control of the Rome- and Milan-based airline.

Lufthansa did not provide detailed information, including how much the bid is worth and how much staff it would retain.

Irish budget airline Ryanair expressed early interest in Alitalia, but two weeks ago said it was dropping the idea.

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