It seems that Easyjet has had enough of the dance with Alitalia… so much so, it’s walked away from the deal with taking part ownership of the airline
This comes at a crucial point where the airline is two weeks away from the Italian Government is expecting a rescue plan to be delivered. This ties in with a state loan that needs to be repaid by the end of June – valued at €900 million.
It leaves Delta and the Italian state rail operator -Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane trying to find a partner to work out what to do next.
Easyjet interests are in the short-haul point to point model – something that Alitalia isn’t set up for its multiple hubs and spoke model it operates.
Reuters reports on some of the sources and possible holding options- with the Ferrovie only wanting 30%, and Delta thinking about 15% – leaving it well short of a new ownership structure.
Will Alitalia survive?
A good question. The airline has been on the market since Eithad pulled the plug, with the state stepping in to help. The airline has a lot of national pride attached to it – which seemingly is keeping it alive.
If anything, Alitalia reminds me of Monty Pythons’s Black Knight
I’ve commented in the past that Alitalia needs to fade away in its current form, and be reborn as a new operation with a lower cost base – with the airline having to shed employees, reduce costs and even tighten up their operations… and not invest money in uniforms.
And unless Alitalia gets a grip of how it operates, it’s going to be doomed to failure. Again
So in answer to the question, yes – they probably will by some gracious state ownership – but they’ll bumble along and rack up loss after loss.
The next question then becomes a simple one – how long can the Italian Government sustain those losses for out of national pride before it throws in the towel?
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