Lufthansa set to sign Air Berlin deal

Lufthansa set to sign Air Berlin deal

Air Berlin planesImage copyright
Reuters

Lufthansa is set to sign a deal to buy parts of Air Berlin, the failed German carrier.

Germany’s second-largest carrier filed for bankruptcy in August after its main shareholder, Etihad, said it would not give further financial support.

Flights continued after a transitional loan of €150m from the German government.

The airline has since been negotiating with potential buyers for parts of its business.

It said last month that negotiations with Lufthansa and EasyJet would continue until Friday.

“We will see a milestone in the history of Lufthansa and Air Berlin today,” Lufthansa chief executive Carsten Spohr told Rheinische Post.

Lufthansa, Germany’s largest airline, is set to buy Air Berlin’s Niki leisure unit, its LG Walter regional airline and some additional short-haul aircraft, Reuters reported.

Mr Spohr said he expected the imminent Air Berlin deal to receive European Union approval by the end of the year, allowing operations to stabilise within about six to nine months.

Shares in Lufthansa rose more than 3% to top Germany’s Dax index after the chief executive’s comments and upbeat notes from analysts.

Air Berlin, which accumulated debt for almost a decade, reported a record loss of €782m (£713m) for last year.

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