03 September, 2017

Air Berlin Cancels Flights & Lauda Still Interested In Buying Niki

Air Berlin has cancelled a number of flights today due to 'operational' reasons and looks set to make some more late notice alterations to its timetable next week.

These fresh cancellations come on the back of the recent announcement that the airline was ending its services between Berlin and Abu Dhabi from mid-September. In a statement from Etihad said: “We have been advised that airberlin is cancelling its operations between Berlin and Abu Dhabi starting on September 15 to October 31, 2017. We are now re-booking our customers onto alternative Etihad flights from that date."

“In addition, due to market uncertainty, we have taken the decision to re-book our customers due to fly with airberlin, from November 1 onwards, onto alternative flights.”

There has been much speculation in the media that Air Berlin may be about to confirm further cancellations to its long-haul routes including those to the USA. 

Read more to find out what Niki Lauda thinks and whom the likely bidders are.

Meanwhile former motor racing driver Niki Lauda is actively working on a rescue bid to buy back the 'Niki' subsidiary.  "I am preparing a plan to bid for Niki which has to go in there by the end of the week. But I have not decided yet under what conditions I will do it,"  Niki Lauda told the Reuters news agency from the pit lane at the Italian Grand Prix in Monza, today(Sunday).  He also said he was waiting for more accountancy documents to come from the airline before making his final decision. 

Those interested in buying Air Berlin, or part thereof have until 15th September to put in their bids and requirements. The outcome is likely to be announced on or near 21st September. 

Other likely bidders include Lufthansa (The German Governments preferred bidder)  EasyJet, Thomas Cook/Condor and another as yet unnamed European airline.  Ryanair had expressed interest and was, at one stage keen to take over the whole airline, however, according to insiders at the airline, they have been unable to secure enough 'ready finance' to make the deal possible.  are also seen as likely bidders.

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