26 September, 2017

Easyjet & Lufthansa are preferred rescuers of Air Berlin

The bankrupt German carrier Air Berlin is going to the next stage in its talks with potential rescuers - the two front-runners are EasyJet and unsurprisingly, Lufthansa.

Air Berlin is fast running out of the €150m euro that's around £130m bailout loan from the government as say a deal with one of these two preferential bidders could help save the jobs of over 80% of its staff.

The negotiations with the two suiters will continue until 12th October, with any final deal needing to be approved by both German and European Union regulators and officials.

Earlier, British Airways' parent company IAG confirmed it was putting in a bid for part of Air Berlin, but said it expected the airline would go mainly to the German airline Lufthansa.  IAG boss Willie Walsh told anyone who would listen at the routes conference that it would not "come as any surprise" if Lufthansa was the main winner.

Thomas Winkelmann, chief executive of Air Berlin, said: "We are on the way to achieving good job prospects for around 80% of our colleagues with our bidders. However, we will not be able to breathe a sigh of relief until the EU Commission has finally authorised the transactions."