While most of the merger mania in the airline industry has been focused recently on the Delta-Northwest discussions. But on the other side of the pond Alitalia has been the focus of some heated discussions as they try to dig themselves out of an incredibly deep hole. They’re currently losing over a million Euros a day, and the Italian government has been trying to sell them off for over a year now. Today Air France/KLM announced that they’ve reached an agreement to make the deal. The Alitalia name will be kept, but the airline will be scaled back significantly, including the shutdown of the Milan hub.
Of course, much like the other merger discussions this one will depend on the unions agree to the plans that AF/KLM have for the carrier, including the shuttering of Milan as a hub. That will include a lot of jobs lost as part of the restructuring, and the unions are unlikely to be happy with that. Only time will tell whether they can make it happen, but I can’t imagine that the Italian unions are going to be happy with the coming job losses.
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