Aeroflot looks to strategic Alitalia purchase

The purchase of the ailing Italian airline Alitalia SpA is a ‘strategic’ option for the Russian group Aeroflot, the daily Il Sole 24 Ore said citing Mikhail Poluboyarinov, financial director for the Russian carrier. ‘The purchase remains strategic for us,’ Poluboyarinov said. There had been speculation that Aeroflot could pull out of the privatisation tender.

The Italian government is selling a 39.9 pct stake in Alitalia and binding offers have to be presented on July 2.

The other bidder shortlisted for the purchase is AP Holding SpA, which owns Italy’s Air One airline.

The newspaper added that Aeroflot has chosen four banks that will guarantee an 800 mln eur loan for the operation.

The banks include Unicredito Italiano SpA, which is Aeroflot’s partner in the bid for Alitalia, Poluboyarinov said.