In the poker game for aircraft and personnel from air berlin's insolvency estate, lufthansa is facing serious competition. The vacation airline condor, which is part of the thomas cook group, is preparing a bid for jets in the double-digit range, as a person familiar with the negotiations told the german press agency. Condor was interested in both medium-haul and long-haul jets. The company did not want to comment on the information on thursday.
Wohrl talks to air berlin
Talks about air berlin are now also to be held with nurnberg entrepreneur hans rudolf wohrl. One is for wednesday (30. August) to "exploratory talks" invited to air berlin, wohrl's intro management company announced on thursday. A spokesman for the airline would not comment on individual interested parties. "It is an open and neutral process in which qualified offers are welcome", he only said.
Air berlin's chief representative, frank kebekus, has meanwhile made it clear that he is aiming for a quick sale. "There is a danger that our business will collapse if the sale takes too long", kebekus told the "wirtschaftswoche" magazine. Short-term bookings are down by six to seven percent, and customers are more reluctant to book flights in a few months' time.
Bad news for customers
Customers who have not yet redeemed their bonus miles with the topbonus frequent flyer program will be left empty-handed, according to kebekus. "The program was stopped." Insolvency also looms for topbonus. Even those who want to be compensated for a delay have bad cards to play. Air berlin could not pay them out, passengers had to file their claims as insolvency claims. Condor had earlier declared its willingness to play an active role in the air berlin insolvency.
For cost reasons alone, interest in medium-haul flights was allowed to focus primarily on the non-insolvent air berlin subsidiary niki from austria, for which lufthansa has already made a concrete offer. The airbus A320 aircraft fit into the condor fleet and, like those of the ferienflieger, were used primarily for tourist destinations. The british airline easyjet is considered to be another interested party in air berlin.
Eurowings is looking for personnel
Lufthansa subsidiary eurowings is already looking intensively for pilots, co-pilots and flight attendants for additional aircraft. The number of personnel sought is sufficient for about 20 additional aircraft, but eurowings does not provide any information about their origin.
According to insiders, the 33 air-berlin jets that have been rented for eurowings since this year are likely to be the ones in question. They are still flown by air-berlin crews, who had to apply for new jobs in case of a transfer.
At their first meeting on wednesday, the believers had initially decided to continue the business as a whole. "We welcome the fact that the credibility committee wants to look at all the offers for air berlin before any decisions are made", said verdi board member christine behle. "Our first priority is not to transfer the metal, but to preserve the jobs and the future working conditions of the employees."
Berlin's mayor michael muller (SPD) demanded on RBB "that good jobs with good conditions for the employees and good wages, from which one can live, remain". He will be talking to employees next week.
Wohrl wants air berlin as a whole
Wohrl had announced his intention to buy the airline as a whole. In the past few days, he accused the airline of giving preferential treatment to lufthansa. After the creditor meeting, wohrl spoke of a trend reversal and announced a qualified offer. The creditor committee meets again at the beginning of september. "It would be great if we could offer the best proposal with our partners", said wohrl. "But if a better offer comes along in such an open and fair process, we will accept it without complaint."