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24 JULY 2017
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Slovenia’s national carrier and Star Alliance member Adria Airways is setting up a new Swiss subsidiary to take over Darwin Airline SA, the Swiss company that has been operating under the name Etihad Regional in various European countries.
The change in ownership follows an agreement between existing Darwin shareholders, including the company’s strategic partner Etihad and Darwin owner 4K Invest of Luxembourg, to sell their shares to the new subsidiary.
Under the terms of the agreement, Darwin will continue to operate under its current legal name Darwin Airline SA with its own air operator’s certificate, but will change its marketing brand from Etihad Regional to Adria Airways Switzerland.
Adria will take over some of Darwin’s administrative and operational tasks and will market the Swiss airline’s services. Darwin CEO Maurizio Merlo is leaving and is replaced by Heinrich Ollendiek, formerly Adria’s chief financial officer.
Adria CEO Arno Schuster said: “Darwin is an excellent airline with experienced management and staff. Extending our network and, consequently, optimising cost structures will create a win-win situation for both carriers.”
Adria, founded in 1961 and privatised last year, is 100% owned by 4K Invest and operates a fleet of Airbus A319s and Bombardier CRJ900s and CRJ700s.
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