Wednesday, 12 February 2020

Liquidation of Air Italy.

Even with the might of the Aga Khan and Qatar Airways behind it, Italy's second-largest carrier could survive the winter and has gone into the liquidation process.

Air Italy confirmed today what many in the industry have been expecting for days, if not weeks and that the end was nigh for the troubled carrier. It's shareholders, the Aga Khan founded Alisarda which owned 51% and Qatar Airways which held 49% have decided on “liquidazione in bonis” of the company.

Qatar Airways took a minor stake in the airline, formally known as Meridiana back in September 2017 and supported Air Italy's business plan for growth, inflight service, job creation and long-haul routes.  In a statement issued on Tuesday, after news broke of the liquidation of Air Italy, the Gulf carrier said it "Has continuously provided all possible support to Air Italy right from the beginning, from releasing aircraft from our fleet and ordering new aircraft for Air Italy, to backing management choices and injecting capital and investment as required and permitted."  

It also blamed Air Italy's demise on Alisarda, "Qatar Airways was ready once again to play its part in supporting the growth of the airline, but this would only have been possible with the commitment of all shareholders." advised the statement.

Air Italy advises that from 11 to 25 February2020 inclusive, all Air Italy flights will be operated by other carriers at the times and on the days previously scheduled; all passengers who booked flights (outward or return) after 25 February 2020 will be re-protected or fully refunded.

More specifically:

All scheduled flights (outward or return) up to and including 25 February 2020 (including the first departures on the morning of 26 February 2020 of domestic flights to Malpensa and from Male and Dakar airports) will be regularly operated, without any changes to the original scheduled dates and times and on the same flight conditions. Passengers will be able to fly using their ticket. Alternatively, passengers can always opt for a full ticket refund by emailing the following address (or contacting their travel agency) prior to their flight’s departure time.
For all tickets scheduled to depart by 25 February 2020 and to return after 25 February 2020:
- the outward journey will be regularly operated, without any changes to the original scheduled dates and times and the same flight conditions; with regards to the return flight, passengers will be offered a travel option on the first available flight of another carrier, the details of which will be provided from 18 February 2020 by calling the following number from Italy: 892928, from abroad: +39078952682, from Usa: +1 866 3876359, from Canada: +1 800 7461888, or by contacting the travel agency in the case of purchase through this channel.
- Alternatively, passengers can opt to claim their refund for unused flight segments, by emailing the following address (or by contacting the travel agency if the ticket was purchased through it) prior to the flight’s departure time.
Tickets for return flights after 25 February 2020:
- If purchased directly via the web (Air Italy portal) or Air Italy contact center, they will be fully refunded in a manner that will be provided via email, or requesting it at the address
- If purchased through the Air Italy ticket office, they will be fully refunded by going to any Air Italy ticket office
- If purchased through a travel agency it will be necessary to request a refund or a change of travel by contacting the agency

The losses had been mounting at the Sardinian based airline, roughly 160 million in 2018 and 200 in 2019

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