The Italian Ministry of Finance will enter into exclusive negotiations with the Lufthansa Group on the sale of a minority stake in Ita Airways. A corresponding declaration of intent was signed by both parties.
This increases the likelihood that the Kranich Group could get a chance at the second attempt. The contract originally went to the Certares/Air France-KLM/Delta consortium. However, no agreement was reached in the course of the exclusive negotiations, so it was cancelled. In contrast to Lufthansa, the original bidder partner MSC is no longer interested in joining ita Airways. Air France-KLM also communicated that no new offer had been made. At the time of the latest bid deadline, only Lufthansa had submitted a letter of intent to the Italian Treasury.
The Kranich Group is currently aiming to take over around 40 percent. According to the Reuters agency, the purchase price should be around 200 to 300 million euros. Most recently, Ita Airways - like its predecessor Alitalia - was deep in the red. Lufthansa intends to take over the Italian airline completely at a later date. Brussels Airlines, which was also bought in stages, could serve as a model. "The parties will now start negotiations about the structure of a possible participation," Lufthansa said in a statement. The Italian Ministry of Finance confirmed the information.
If there is a contract with the Kranich Group, it is likely that Ita Airways will leave Skyteam and switch to Star Alliance. This would be a major setback for the first-mentioned alliance, since access to the Italian market would be lost. For the aviation alliance around Lufthansa, on the other hand, it would be a significant gain.