Air France-KLM interested in Alitalia takeover

Air France-KLM is again seriously interested in a takeover of the struggling Italian carrier Alitalia, newspaper De Telegraaf reported, citing Air France-KLM management sources. However, Air France-KLM is also waiting on an initiative from the Italian government towards the privatisation of Alitalia and wants financial stability to be restored to the airline, the Telegraaf reported.

Last week, the Italian government closed an auction for a stake of at least 39.9 pct in Alitalia after none of the candidates filed bids because of the various conditions attached to the deal.

It has also been reported that Italy’s economy ministry is considering relaunching the sale of its stake in Alitalia with lighter conditions.

Contacted by Thomson Financial News, an Air France-KLM spokeswoman said that the group had nothing to add to the position it set out at the end of May.

Chief executive Jean-Cyril Spinetta said then that Air France-KLM will not be involved in the bidding process for Alitalia, although he added that ‘we do not rule out revisiting’ the matter.