Aigle Azur, in difficulty, will cease its service in Portugal and is preparing to cede this activity to the Spanish budget Vueling, its president Franz Yvelin said yesterday, excluding any threat of the imminent disappearance of the second largest French airline.
“We are preparing to sell a small portion of our Paris operations in Vueling without any social impact. In this context, we will retain part of our business in Orly and transfer the rest of our business to Paris-Charles de Gaulle,” said Mr. Yvelin, head of a specialized company. in the service of Algeria since September 2017. “There is no threat in the short term, but on the other hand, in the long term, the threat is real,” Mr. Yvelin added.
If he assures that the passengers on vacation are not “afraid” to return, he acknowledges that the company is faced with “difficulties” related to labor costs in France, rising fuel prices and the situation of overcapacity in Europe last fall.
The company, founded in 1946 and whose ties with Algeria comprise from 50 to 60% of its activities, has 1,150 employees, including 350 in Algeria. In 2018, it transported 1,881 million passengers and has a turnover of 300 million euros (or $ 336 million) per year, but “has been losing money since 2012,” according to Evelyn. In August, he had about 25 million euros ($ 28 million) in cash. “We did not find any interested parties to purchase Aigle Azur,” he continued. The company is owned by the Chinese group HNA (49%), American businessman David Nilman (32%) and Lu Azur (19%).
According to him, Aigle Azur will cease to serve Portugal from the end of October. A proposed sale of this activity was presented to the factory council on 5 August. He “wanted to conduct additional research,” which could take two months in accordance with the statutory deadline, he said, adding that management “prepared the work so that everything was ready as a result of this examination in early October.”
Vueling is part of the IAG, which also includes British Airways, Iberia in Spain, Aer Lingus in Ireland and the low-cost airline Level.
Aigle Azour, whom L & # 39; Orient-Le Jour contacted, was unable to discuss the impact of this acquisition on his activities in Lebanon.
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