Air Berlin, germany’s second largest airline, in deficit for several years, filed for bankruptcy Tuesday, after the decision of its major shareholder Etihad Airways to cease any financial support. Lufthansa, which is already coming to the assistance of his fellow, and most recently last June, said to be in negotiation for the recovery of a part of its activities, and thus of its slots for takeoff and landing.
| Read : Agreement with Air Berlin : Lufthansa could “go further”
The news came in full summer leave period, marked by a peak of activity in the sector of air transport, and less than a month and a half of federal elections. The government of Angela Merkel has announced that it has granted to Air Berlin a bridge loan of 150 million euros, sufficient, according to him, to allow him to continue his activities for up to three months and maintain its workforce, who represent approximately 7.200 persons, pending the outcome of the discussions.
Air Berlin negotiates with Lufthansa and another company of a possible sale of assets, said the government, adding expect decisions in the coming weeks.
Lufthansa is “well-positioned to choose what she wants to take back”
Lufthansa leases already aircraft of Air Berlin, which detaches the crews of the aircraft involved, in order to strengthen its subsidiary low-cost Eurowings, and the group has never hidden to want to go further, even if it considers that the debt of his rival, and the obstacles related to the antitrust regulations could pose a problem.
“Lufthansa has played shows for several years and is now well placed to choose what she wants to take over the operations of Air Berlin to meet his needs without having to buy the whole a loss-making venture,” said Jonathan Wober, analyst at the CAPA-Center for Aviation.
| Read : Lufthansa, joint Air Berlin to strengthen its subsidiary low-cost Eurowings
In the red almost constantly since 2008
She finished in the red almost all of the financial years since 2008 and 2016 has resulted in a record loss of 782 million euros, more than two million per day.
The financial support of Etihad, a shareholder since 2011 and owns about 30% of its capital, was kept afloat for several years, but the company of Abu Dhabi has undertaken to re-assess its portfolio of investments in Europe failing to be received at the profitability expected initially.
Air Berlin is not the first victim of this strategic shift since the Italian airline Alitalia, in which Etihad is also a shareholder, has already gone into administration and is looking for buyers.
| Read : Alitalia can it this time out ?
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