Showing posts with label Niki. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Niki. Show all posts

14 December, 2017

The uncertain future of Niki

The fate of the Austrian subsidiary of Air Berlin, Niki seemed relatively certain a few days ago after Lufthansa had agreed to buy it as part of its rescue deal for Air Berlin. However European regulators expressed concern over competition in the region and so the German flag carrier Lufthansa has been forced to scrap its plans to buy Niki on Wednesday.  The surprise move has grounded the airlines fleet of aircraft and stranded thousands of passengers. The airlines managing director said was a “national disaster for Austria”.

The email message advising the end of Niki

Austria’s Transport Ministry indicated that there were approximately 5,000 Niki passengers stranded overseas over the next few weeks. Some would be able to get special 'rescue' fares with other airlines, including Eurowings and Tui.   

The airlines' administrator started urgent talks today in an effort to secure a purchaser for the beleaguered airline founded by former racing driver Niki Lauda. The administrators believe they must act with extreme urgency or else the airline may lose one of its most valuable assets, its runway slots!

Generally speaking in Europe, after the bankruptcy of an airline, the expensive runway slots are returned to a central pool from which they are redistributed to other airlines. Unless of course a buy has been found for the bankrupt airline. 

One of the administrators, Frank Kebekus hoped a deal for Niki could be agreed before the end of the year. “If we had that, then we can certainly take another week or two in January to finalize it,” he told local media. 

Local media is also reporting that there are five companies that have expressed an interest in buying the airline business. Although according to Wolfgang Katzian of Austrian union GPA said there were four interested parties, but refused to name them.

Earlier in the year, before the Lufthansa deal was in place, Niki Lauda offered around €100 million in partnership with Condor - part of Thomas Cook for Niki and 17 aircraft.  Yesterday he expressed to local radio that he was still interested in taking over the company - this time without a business partner.

The future is looking incredibly uncertain, for both passengers and staff - who still don't know for sure if they are going to get their wages for November. 

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13 December, 2017

Lufthansa makes further concessions to EU Commission

Lufthansa has made further concessions today in the course of the intended acquisition of parts of the Air Berlin Group. The transaction is currently being examined by the EU Commission as the responsible merger control authority. In the so-called Phase One assessment, Lufthansa had already offered extensive commitments in particular by giving up slots. However, the Commission considers this to be insufficient and has clearly indicated that an acquisition of Niki and its integration into the Eurowings Group would currently not be approved. Based on this assessment, a takeover of Niki by Eurowings is no longer being pursued. 

Takeover of Niki no longer pursued
Offer to give up further slots for still intended takeover of  Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter (LGW) 

Lufthansa has today informed both Air Berlin and its administrator that it intends to close the transaction excluding the acquisition of Niki. 

With regard to the still intended takeover of Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter (LGW), Lufthansa would give up numerous slots in order to obtain merger clearance in Phase One. The revised commitments will be submitted to the EU Commission today.  

The Lufthansa Group maintains its plan of expanding its point-to-point business increasingly through organic growth of the Eurowings Group.

A share of the agreed purchase price for Niki has already been transferred to the company as bridge financing. The unpaid purchase price components will now be used for the organic capacity expansion in Niki's markets. Economically, this leads to a comparable result for the Lufthansa Group.

This article was written for this site by a member of our team 🙋, please do share it with your friends via social media. You are also welcome to post it or republish elsewhere on the 🌎web on the condition that you credit the author and link back to our site. Thank you.

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13 October, 2017

Contract for the purchase of parts of Air Berlin Group signed

After intense negotiations over the past few weeks, Deutsche Lufthansa AG and the Air Berlin Group have signed a contract today regarding the purchase of NIKI Luftfahrt GmbH (NIKI) and Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter mbH (LGW).

These two carriers are projected to increase the capacity of the operational fleet at Eurowings as follows:

LGW with 870 employees, as well as 17 Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 and 13 Airbus A320 aircraft
NIKI with 830 employees, as well as 20 Airbus A320 type aircraft

This means that the wet-lease operation that is currently still provided for Eurowings by Air Berlin Group will be taken over by Eurowings’ own operational fleet. Eurowings also plans to acquire additional aircraft on the market and hire 1,300 more employees.

Eurowings remains the fastest-growing airline in Europe,  “Our strategic modernization initiatives have paid off. We have regained the capacity to invest and grow, in order to play an active role in the consolidation of the European airline market with Eurowings. As the fastest-growing airline in Europe, Eurowings can now expand the range of services it offers customers,” says Carsten Spohr, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Deutsche Lufthansa AG.

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.

29 August, 2017

Niki Lauda May Buy Back Niki From Air Berlin

Former F1 driver Niki Lauda is interested in buying back insolvent Air Berlin’s Niki, the Austrian airline he once owned, joining a slew of companies and investors vying to grab parts of the German carrier.

Lauda expressed his interest in Niki in a letter to Air Berlin’s insolvency administrator but he has yet to look into Niki’s books, he told Austrian newspaper Kronen-Zeitung.

“Now let’s see what happens, whether I’ll be invited to the negotiations at all,” he was quoted as saying.