Shareholder insists Alitalia on keeping Air France-KLM as partner

October 30
12:17 PM 2013

On Wednesday, a representative of one of Alitalia's main shareholders stressed the importance of Franco-Dutch airline Air France-KLM as the Italian carrier's industrial partner.

Intesa Sanpaolo chief executive officer Carlo Messina told reporters at the sidelines of a Rome conference, "There must be an agreement with an industrial partner."

Messina also insisted that the partner should be Air France-KLM. Air France-KLM has a 25% ownership stake in beleaguered Alitalia.

Alitalia, or otherwise known as Compagnia Aerea Italiana SpA, had been plagued with problems in its operations. Aside from a bankruptcy threat, the airline carrier would also be facing a major fuel supplier loss and a potential grounding by Italian aviation authorities.

Alitalia would be embarking on a EUR300 million or USD413.09 million capital increase plan to boost its financial position. Intesa Sanpaolo had already made its contribution to augment Alitalia's capital. 

Air France-KLM had yet to take part in the capital increase program. Otherwise, the Franco-Dutch airline would risk diluting its ownership stake, said Reuters.

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