1 JULY 2013
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The Dublin press reports that Air France-KLM is negotiating to sell its loss-making London City centred CityJet (WX) unit to a German corporate rescue firm. In fact CityJet is two airlines marketed as Air France, CityJet itself (25 Avro RJ85s) and VLM (15 Fokker 50s).
It is understood that Germany-based turnaround specialist Intro Aviation is in exclusive talks with the owners to buy the business, but negotiations are not yet complete.
One of Intro's specialities is buying loss-making airlines, restructuring them and selling them on. It bought Germany's Deutsche BA from BA in 2003 for just €1 and sold the company to Air Berlin three years later.
In 2006 Intro bought a controlling stake in a second German airline LTU Group and sold it to Air Berlin in 2007.
Air France (in partnership with Brymon) was the first airline into London City (LCY) with Paris CDG flights, but after introducing Orly found it did not require duplicated routes to the French capital and now only serves the alternative airport with six flights weekdays. The airline offers 21 destinations in total. Reports indicate that assuming the deal goes through the London City services will revert to the WX flight code and the non-LCY routes to HOP! www.cityjet.com
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