Alitalia is “no longer needed”

CAPA presents “harsh truth” in analysis
Bankruptcy proceedings have started at Alitalia after confirmation by shareholders that they would not provide the €2 billion in fresh capital the loss-making airline needs. It has government cash to keep flying for six months but then that’s probably it.
In analysis, industry analysts at CAPA conclude: “The harsh truth is that – outside a number of unhappy staff – nobody really needs Alitalia.”
Alitalia employees voted 67% against a restructuring plan that was to have included €1 billion in cost cuts. Airline-union negotiations reduced the number of proposed redundancies, from 2,000 job cuts to 980, but still staff voted against the plan.
The whole company is now up for sale, but a buyer – IAG, Air France-KLM or Lufthansa – is unlikely. Lufthansa has considered investing in Alitalia in the past, briefly setting up Lufthansa Italia in 2008 and now running a regional airline subsidiary, Air Dolomiti. But it is busy integrating Brussels Airlines.
This might change in a deal with Alitalia’s 49% shareholder Etihad also involving airberlin. But Alitalia’s losses are unappealing.
Another possibility is Chinese conglomerate HNA Group, but the Italian airline’s track record is a definite hurdle, while HNA’s European focus is on developing a relationship Portuguese carrier TAP.
More state funding has been ruled out. If no buyer is found, the only alternative seems to be liquidation. The airline looks doomed.


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