FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Lufthansa and Air France-KLM are circling collapsed UK regional airline Flybe to try to obtain its take-off and landing slots at London’s Heathrow Airport, Britain’s Telegraph newspaper reported on Saturday.
Lufthansa and Air France-KLM declined to comment.
The Telegraph said the two airlines were in talks with the administrators of Flybe, which a week ago ceased trading and went into insolvency for the second time in three years, with all flights cancelled and 276 workers made redundant.
Administrators from Interpath Advisory may have just days to agree to a rescue that would avoid the business being wound up, the newspaper said, citing sources in London’s financial community.
Lufthansa and Air France-KLM are interested in Flybe’s seven pairs of take-off and landing slots at Heathrow and five pairs at Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport, the report said.
Suitors would need to take on many of the bankrupt airline’s liabilities as well as the potentially lucrative assets, it quoted one source as saying.
If a buyer for Flybe cannot be found it is likely that the slots would be returned to a central pool run by the airports coordinator, it said.
(Reporting by Ilona Wissenbach; and Camille Raynaud; Writing by Vera Eckert; Editing by Mark Potter)