MIAMI — The Italian Government has confirmed receiving three offers to buy the insolvent airline Alitalia, not giving any details regarding these proposals or bidders.
easyJet said on April 10, 2018, “easyJet has today submitted a revised expression of interest for a restructured Alitalia, together as part of a consortium, consistent with easyJet’s existing strategy for Italy.
“Given the nature of the process, the content of the expression of interest is subject to confidentiality,” the airline said in a statement and clarified that further updates would be provided in due course.
— Reuters Business (@ReutersBiz) April 11, 2018
Lufthansa also presented new plans and ideas of what the German carrier would convey as a “New Alitalia.”
On top of Lufthansa, a US investment fund in the name of Cerberus Capital Management is also in the list of potential investors who are interested in acquiring some aspects of the carrier.
Alitalia has supposedly had interest from the Air France-KLM group, although they have vividly denied such claim.
The initial report said that the group was going to provide a joint bid with easyJet, but updated plans now show that this is not the case anymore.
Problems with the Internals?
Alitalia went into Chapter 11 in May 2017, and the deadline for bids was set on October 16th, 2017 initially.
However, this had been delayed due to current consultations with the political parties in Italy regarding the sale of the airline.
In terms of repayments of bridge loans, these have also been delayed as state commissioners need to weigh up the bids given by the interested airlines.
The mandate of such commissioners is due to expire by the end of the month, thus putting pressure on the commissioners to make their minds up about the bids.
Although progress is somewhat evident, there is still an issue with the airline’s internal affairs.
With Alitalia being a massive problem within Italian politics, the system itself is also in crisis. The national election which took place in March resulted in a hung parliament. Political parties have not come together yet to form an overall minority government, which could potentially extend the deadlines further if no decisions are made.
At the moment, with the political parties being notified about updates, a deal may not be made until the government is formed and solidified following such a hung parliament.
Even before the hung parliament occurred, the demise of Alitalia became a significant political issue.
With the government not being able to keep to deadlines and making a decision towards the sale of the ill-fated carrier, a decision must be made in the short-term to keep the airline fully operational.
Overall, the Alitalia/Italian Government situation is going to put significant pressure on the parties involved to push for a collective solution that will benefit all parties.