American air carrier Delta Air Lines and Franco-Dutch airline holding company Air France-KLM have presented an expression of interest (EoI) to the Italian Ministry of Economy for a majority stake in Italy’s new state-owned flag carrier, Italia Trasporto Aereo, La Repubblica, reported on March 10, 2022.
The airlines have reportedly been backed by an unnamed international fund.
However, Italia Trasporto Aereo, also known as ITA Airways, has yet to proan official announcement.
News regarding Delta and Air France-KLM’s interest to acquire more than half of ITA’s shares came after German airline Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) and shipping and logistics company, MSC Group forged a partnership to pitch for the right to control the newly established Italian carrier. The bidders submitted their EOI on January 24, 2022 and requested 90 days to firm up further details of the deal.
In November 2021, ITA’s chairman of the board of directors, Alfredo Altavilla told German business newspaper Handelsblatt that ITA, Alitalia’s successor, would like to become a part of the Lufthansa Group.
“It would be wrong to remain independent because we would always be too small compared to the three big airline groups operating in Europe,” Altavilla explained.
“We are a pretty bachelorette who has many admirers,” he added.