September 22, 2008

Alitalia to Issue Notice for Public Offers

Beleaguered Italian airline Alitalia is expected to make a last-ditch attempt for public offers to be bought out following a failed takeover attempt by the CAI consortium.

Italian media sources reported that a public tender notice for bids from investors is expected to be published on the airline's website and other print media outlets.

Industry sources said that a prospective last-minute takeover bid by a foreign firm is being hoped for after the CAI consortium withdrew its $1.4 billion bid for the troubled airline as a majority of the Alitalia's unions turned down a deal which could have resulted in the pruning of more than 3,000 jobs.

Italy's transport minister, Altero Matteoli, stated that Alitalia could be grounded completely in a week's time if a deal is not reached at the earliest. He said that the airline's license would be revoked in a few days time and the CAI offer was the only way to save the airline.