Trou­bled Air Ber­lin in talks to trans­fer planes to new air­line

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SUNBIZ -

FRANK­FURT: Ger­man air­line Air Ber­lin said yes­ter­day it would dis­cuss trans­fer­ring part of its fleet to a new group founded by pack­age tour gi­ant TUI and Gulf car­rier Eti­had as part of a ma­jor over­haul.

Air Ber­lin will dis­cuss bring­ing 35 of its air­craft, in­clud­ing 14 al­ready leased from TUI sub­sidiary TUIfly, into a “new air­line group to be founded by the TUI group and Eti­had”, it said in a state­ment.

The plans re­main sub­ject to ne­go­ti­a­tion and reg­u­la­tory ap­proval, the state­ment con­tin­ued.

In a sep­a­rate state­ment, Eti­had said “the new air­line group would serve a com­pre­hen­sive route net­work from Germany, Aus­tria and Switzer­land”.

Air Ber­lin share­holder Eti­had has kept the strug­gling air­line alive with reg­u­lar cash in­jec­tions in re­cent years.

The Ger­man com­pany suf­fered a record loss of 447 mil­lion (RM2.1 bil­lion) in 2015.

Air Ber­lin a week ago an­nounced a ma­jor re­struc­tur­ing that would see it shrink its fleet from 144 planes to 75 and cut 1,200 jobs, say­ing it would fo­cus on its core busi­ness ar­eas in a bid to re­turn to prof­itabil­ity.

In fu­ture, Air Ber­lin said it would con­cen­trate on its hubs of Ber­lin and Dues­sel­dorf, build­ing out long-haul routes with new des­ti­na­tions and more fre­quent flights, es­pe­cially to the United States. – AFP

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