1676277740 IAG sees Portuguese TAP as plan B in case Air

IAG sees Portuguese TAP as plan B in case Air Europa fails

IAG sees Portuguese TAP as plan B in case Air

The forthcoming opening of a sales process for the Portuguese airline BEAT the primary purpose of the participation has not changed IAG to reinforce Iberia with the sum of air europe. However, the company run by Luis Gallego is keeping a close eye on the burgeoning Lisbon operation. It would be an alternative plan if Brussels again shows great reluctance to buy the company from the Hidalgo family.

the American evercore prepares the TAP sales book, while the Portuguese government has already tested the appetites of the main flight groups. IAG has even been courted with various public statements about the suitability of integrating TAP with Iberia. But the economy minister Antonio Costa Silva, changed the pace on Thursday by telling Parliament that the Spanish do not appear to be a “good solution” for marriage. Behind this cooling, which does not mean closing the doors, is the proximity of the Lisbon and Madrid hubs. Costa, yes, admitted to having declared last January that TAP had “created the conditions for Iberia to start its privatization”, adding that it was his responsibility to “seize the widest possible number of interested parties for our airline to win”.

Despite everything, IAG is awaiting the conclusion of negotiations with Globalia for Air Europa, a move about which Iberia is still optimistic and has proved a trial of strength in other processes. the nordic SAS and Finnair They are other candidates that go into the showcase.

“The Portuguese company has a large part of its long-haul market in Brazil, where it is gaining ground over the rest of the European airlines,” explains an air market analyst, “it would not be surprising if a potential owner wanted that AirFrance Strengthening TAP routes to the rest of Latin America”.

A battle between Air France, Lufthansa and IAG is expected in the market

The consolidation process in European air traffic forces the strengthening of IAG in the Madrid-Barajas position. And Rome Fiumicino Airport is also said to be a serious threat.

The group Lufthansa is negotiating accession with the Italian government IT, successor to Alitalia, with a maximum initial endowment of 40%. From there, it would rise to 51% once the Italian company recovers from losses, becoming the sole shareholder in 2027. “The German company will dominate the Italian market and could boost supply in Rome to and from the Latin American market, in which it plays a minor role from the center of Europe,” explains one of the sources consulted.

With Lufthansa operating out of Rome and a possible new life for TAP once it is handed over to private equity, Iberia would feel the current pressure from Air France from Paris and the potential new shareholders of ITA and TAP. The situation seems to have permeated the Spanish government, which has become aware of the importance of Spanish integration in Madrid-Barajas.

Latin America at stake

The discourse, already internalized in La Moncloa, is that Aena’s largest airport must face Asia, which requires a stronger airline than the current Iberia. But what worries most now is that Madrid are not relinquishing their role as a gateway to Europe to and from Latin America.

The Portuguese government will present the operation to the Council of Ministers shortly

The Portuguese government will shortly submit to the Council of Ministers the sale of 100% of the rescued TAP. And the aforementioned Air France and Lufthansa sound like candidates. The first was about to buy Air Europa and was able to return the fee. Lufthansa is more interested in disembarking in Italy, as is the case with IAG and its attempt to buy Air Europa.

March will be a crucial month for the fight, for which it again became a Portuguese flag society. TAP is expected to show a recovery well in excess of what its restructuring plan envisages (it presented a net profit of 111 million in the third quarter, which reduced nine-month losses to 91 million) and that this milestone can arouse interest. Reflotation with public funds reached 3,200 million, which the Executive wants to recoup with the placement of all capital.

resuscitation after rescue

Victim. The European Commission gave the green light to rescue TAP Air in December 2021. The aid came in exchange for a fleet reduction (it had 106 aircraft before the health crisis and dropped to 96) and a workforce adjustment that reached 2,900 troops. Those who stayed with the company took a 25% pay cut.

Key to Lisbon. TAP Air’s squadron has 96 aircraft: 22 long-haul aircraft (19 A330neo and three A330ceo); 54 short- and medium-haul aircraft (A319, A320 and A321) and 20 regional-haul aircraft (ATR and Embraer) operated by subsidiary Portugalia. Its market share at Lisbon Airport exceeds 50%.

reserve after the crisis. The airline reported a cash position of 775 million as of September 30, down 115 million from June due to increased activity during the summer months. The liquidity buffer doubles compared to September 2021 (377 million).

Recreation. TAP’s load factor was slightly higher than last summer for the same period in 2019. That year before the pandemic, the airline served 17 million travelers.