7-Jan-2013 1:23 PM

Air France-KLM in advanced talks for a takeover of Alitalia: report

Air France-KLM is in advanced talks for a takeover of Alitalia, of which it already owns 25%, by summer 2013, according to a report by Il Messaggero. Alitalia is currently controlled by an investment consortium, CAI, which includes Air France-KLM, which purchased the airline in 2008 when it was insolvent. On 12-Jan-2013, a lock-up of shares in the airline is to expire which will allow shares to be sold. Air France-KLM reportedly has offered other shareholders in the airline a 20% premium over the purchase price of their initial investments in Alitalia in 2008 in order to take over the airline. Meanwhile former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said he opposed a takeover of Alitalia by a foreign group, stating via Facebook on 06-Jan-2013, “Our country cannot afford not having its own flagship airline. If Alitalia had fallen into the hands of the French...many tourists would have ended up visiting the castles in the Loire valley instead of our cities of art". [more - original PR - Italian]

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