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ITA Airways intensifies activities by opening new routes

image courtesy of N.Porro, Il Giornale

ITA Airways announced new flights from Genoa to Alghero and Olbia for summer from July 30 to September 4, flying every Saturday and Sunday.

This is the only positive news published by the ITA Airways press office of late. The airline announced new flights from Genoa to Alghero and Olbia for the summer from July 30 to September 4, flying every Saturday and Sunday.

But there is no news regarding internal management and financial problems still injected by taxpayers. Why? Because ITA management does not make profits: it loses 2 million a day.

Below is a critical and amusing comment published by the Italian daily Il Giornale, the result of an intelligence investigation signed by N.Porro – quote:

“Knives fly. They hate each other.” What happens in the “new” Ita Airways?

The company, according to the latest public data, continues to lose about 2 million euros a day, net of internal feuds.

Right now, the fate of the old Alitalia is being decided. The Palazzo (government rumors), barring direct hits from Prime Minister Draghi, speak of the usual swamp: “you had to have an idea about the buyer by the end of May, and instead nothing.”

There is a risk of a new swamp at the expense of the taxpayer with a new stalemate. There are 3 parties: that of the Germans, that of the French, and that of making a living as it is.

The new ITA proved to be similar to the old Alitalia. Apart from a painted blue on airplanes and online applications, just its coat of paint should make one think.

That’s the first thing the marketers thought about doing. Genes: they thought that a coat of blue was enough to transform a Ritmo car into a Lamborghini. The planes inside are the same as before, but outside they look different.

In short, the shape changes, but not the substance. And the booking application is now a beautiful blue, but it works worse than before: it is so stupid that at each check-in you have to retype your name and surname. But let’s go in order. Unfortunately, and it was written by those who initially believed in it, things did not go as they should.

One would say: we are used to it. But the point is another. The new company has few employees, with salaries and benefits to the bone. The fleet counts 50 of the same type of planes, the only right decision is to rationalize the cost. In short, there is no one here (right, President Altavilla?) who can act as Marchionne (a smart Italian tycoon) and shoot at workers or trade unions.

Here is the weakness of the company, as usual, with the small detail that employees cannot be blamed which, indeed, are the best aspect of the new company.

Although they are paid to the level of low-cost employees, they generally have well-established grace and professionalism. And when you get picky about treatment on board, think about how they treat you elsewhere.

The real issue is not just the money that ITA throws into the drain every day. This waste of money was born also by buying the Alitalia brand for as much as 90 million euros (some say it was forced by the government) and finally saved it in the drawer. It’s like a citizen’s income earner buys oysters and Dom Perignon champagne to store it in the cellar. Without a future!

No, the problem is called litigation. Knives have been flying within the company top for months.

It is a known secret that President Altavilla and the CEO, Lazzerini, hate each other. And the thing propagates down the branches negatively – managers who respond to the first in command and who tease those who respond to the second.

The company is small, however, it is difficult to work well in such a climate. Fortunately, the group’s operations are under the command of a pilot who takes care of flying the machines, educating the staff, and the safety of passengers. For the rest it is Vietnam.

There are dozens of rudeness in those parts: just think that one day the CEO of the company was summoned by the president and more or less said to him: “Do you want a couple of million (euros) to quit?” And he replied: “Are you kidding? You have no power to give me a euro. If anything, the Treasury, which is our shareholder, can decide.”

Nice climate. They should be united to give the company a future, and instead, they coexist with threats to fire each other. In this kindergarten setting, how can the company’s sales process proceed?

Bad, of course. On the one hand there is the Italian-German consortium (Lufthansa and MSC) and on the other the French one (funds with Air France). Yesterday, Repubblica daily, wrote of the complaints of the Germans, who allegedly accused ITA of not having provided them with the information requested. There is a bet, and within the company, they do: 2 factions are divided between French and German.

On the other hand, if the company is in disarray, a united government would be needed.

Unfortunately, history repeats itself. The government does not take over the reins, politics believes that ITA, like the old Alitalia, is its playground and the taxpayers pay the bill. (anonymous quote)

In a recent meeting organized by Capone, UGL’s secretary, (Union UGL: General Union of Labor Office) it became clear how the same contrasts that exist in ITA are reflected within Palazzo Chigi (Italian government presidency of the council) and the Treasury with the Paris and Berlin parties.

Add to this the Transport Commission with a component, for example, Fratelli D’Italia, (right-wing/extreme) refusing to give up the majority of what they incredibly consider (ITA) a jewel, in agreement with a certain part of the left. It is from the other Lega and Forza Italia (Rixi and Rosso) who think that we should give up as soon as possible.

On the one hand, there is the in-depth investigations of the 2 contenders – MSC-Lufthansa and the Certares (fund investing Coy focusing on several key sectors, including travel and tourism) the rush of the Draghi government to close the ITA Airways game.

The privatization of the company 100% controlled by the Ministry of Economy enters the decisive phase with the reopening (on June 22) of the data room useful for providing further details requested by the 2 consortiums which intend to take over most of the carrier’s shares.

According to Il Corriere Della Sera, (Corsera), the privatization procedure to be completed by the end of June has been postponed to July 7-8 – the days in which the executive will have to choose the partner who will buy the company born on the remains of Alitalia.

By July 5, therefore, MSC-Lufthansa and the Certares fund will have access to new documents that answer the approximately 300 questions posed by the 2 competitors to the Italian government.

Also, July 5 is the deadline for submitting a binding offer which must include the economic offer, the 5-year business plan, and the definition of the new governance.

PM Mario Draghi – again according to Corsera – is, therefore, in a hurry to close within 48 hours of the submission of offers and then immediately open the discussion table with the winning consortium and sign the definitive agreement by the end of the year.

At the moment, the offer from MSC and Lufthansa remains in pole position, valuing ITA at about one billion euros and intending to take over 80% of the company, leaving the remaining 20% ​​to the MEF ( Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance).

The Certares proposal – which provides for a commercial partnership with Air France and Delta Air Lines – is less clear, but the valuation of the company by the US fund would be around 650-850 million euros.

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About the author

Mario Masciullo - eTN Italy

Mario is a veteran in the travel industry.
His experience extends worldwide since 1960 when at the age of 21 he started exploring Japan, Hong Kong, and Thailand.
Mario has seen the World Tourism develop up to date and witnessed the
destruction of the root/testimony of the past of a good number of countries in favor of modernity/progress.
During the last 20 years Mario's travel experience has concentrated in South East Asia and of late included the Indian Sub Continent.

Part of Mario's work experience includes multi activities in the Civil Aviation
field concluded after organizing the kik off of for Malaysia Singapore Airlines in Italy as an Institutor and continued for 16 years in the role of Sales /Marketing Manager Italy for Singapore Airlines after the split of the two governments in October 1972.

Mario's official Journalist license is by the "National Order of Journalists Rome, Italy in 1977.

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