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mxaxai
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Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 7:16 pm

So it's finally happening...

What was floated as a rumor two weeks ago https://www.airliners.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1342623 is now becoming official.

Airberlin will:
  • reduce their employee count short term by ca. 1200 from todays 8600
  • wet-lease ca. 40 aircraft to Lufthansa's Eurowings
  • withdraw from the Hamburg and Stuttgart markets; No. 1 focus will be the hubs @ DUS & TXL
  • expand the A332 fleet from 14 to 17 (1 more than originally planned).
  • return the aircraft leased from Tuifly to the lessor; additionally the Niki fleet will also operate for Tuifly (total 31 aircraft). Alongside, most tour packages, charters & leisure-heavy flights will be transferred to Tuifly *NOTE: some sources merely claim that "leisure heavy medium haul operations will be separated"*

Overall, LH managers should be partying tonight. What concerns myself most is the fate of the Q400. They are some of the last regional aircraft offering spoke-spoke services around Germany. Especially HAM and STR might lose some thinner routes.



TL;DR: AB removes 1200 employees & 40 - 75 aircraft. Focus on DUS & TXL hubs

Sources: (german only) http://www.tagesschau.de/wirtschaft/airberlin-133.html
http://www.faz.net/aktuell/wirtschaft/u ... 57920.html
Last edited by SQ22 on Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Thread title was misleading
 
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MD80
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Re: The latest saga of airberlin ...

Wed Sep 28, 2016 7:34 pm

Are there any plans with LGW (and their Q400s) operated for Airberlin?

Regards
 
mxaxai
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Re: The latest saga of airberlin ...

Wed Sep 28, 2016 7:42 pm

MD80 wrote:
Are there any plans with LGW (and their Q400s) operated for Airberlin?

Regards

Not yet. But operating tiny bases for 2 or 3 Q400 each is probably not economically viable. Hence why I believe that some of the Q400 routes not touching either DUS or TXL will be cut.
 
Thomas_Jaeger
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Re: The latest saga of airberlin ...

Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:11 pm

They mentioned 18 Q400s will stay with AB. They currently have 17, so one more to be added to the fleet.
 
avi8
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:29 pm

How many aircraft will they keep? It seems like it's now going to be a very small airline.
 
uberflieger
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:42 pm

avi8 wrote:
How many aircraft will they keep? It seems like it's now going to be a very small airline.

Looks like 75 will be flying in AB colors.
 
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ro1960
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:55 pm

I took this photo 3 weeks ago when I landed at SXF. They were still there a week later when I left (not sure they were the same ones). It looks like AB has a few birds to spare.

Image
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:58 pm

mxaxai wrote:
expand the A332 fleet from 14 to 17 (1 more than originally planned).

Interesting that they're going to (try to) keep their longhaul flights.... I thought that those would be a goner for sure.

Still will be shocked if it lasts. :(
 
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NYCRuss
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:13 pm

LAX772LR wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
expand the A332 fleet from 14 to 17 (1 more than originally planned).

Interesting that they're going to (try to) keep their longhaul flights.... I thought that those would be a goner for sure.

Still will be shocked if it lasts. :(


According to Aviation Week, AB will have a two-pronged strategy that includes long haul:
What is more, Air Berlin's 70-aircraft operation with two bases in Dusseldorf and Berlin is subscale in the segments it plans to serve. Etihad wants to position the airline as a high-end carrier on short-haul routes in the two markets which already have a high degree of low-cost carrier competition.

Air Berlin also plans a massive expansion on long-haul routes from both cities as it takes more used Airbus A330s for its transatlantic network.


Doesn't strike me as a focused vision.
 
spacecookie
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:17 pm

Have a Flight with them in a few weeks, I fly with them to Germany for ages.
Sad to see how a once good looking company got killed by bad management.
 
r2rho
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:08 pm

AB fleet of 134 aircraft will be restructured as follows:

Flying in AB colors for AB:
- 40 A320 family
- 18 Q400
- 17 A330s

grouped into a separate leisure-oriented subsidiary:
35 aircraft, among which the 14 737s being flown by TUIfly under a ruinous wet-lease deal. "strategic options will be evaluated" - in other words, this subsidiary will eventually be sold off. AB is said to be willing to sacrifice Niki and hand it to TUI in exchange for being allowed to cancel the TUI wet-lease deal.

Operated by AB, flying for EW & OS under a wet lease deal:
- 29 A320
- 11 A319

details in German:

http://www.airliners.de/lufthansa-air-b ... ahme/39677
Last edited by r2rho on Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
LHRFlyer
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:09 pm

Here's the release from Air Berlin in English:

http://ir.airberlin.com/en/ir/financial ... erm-growth
 
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thekorean
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:45 pm

Just liquidize the company and create a new airline company, Air Germany.

And hub it at DUS.
 
NichCage
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 11:33 pm

This is needed for the future of Air Berlin. By getting rid of flights in Europe as well as increasing long haul with turn the airline around. This is also a good move because while Air Berlin may compete with Lufthansa, it's better than letting EasyJet and Ryanair expand in Germany.
 
avek00
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 11:49 pm

Airberlin will likely not survive more than a couple years, but I suppose it's prudent to make the carrier's demise as gradual as possible to mitigate market disruptions and employee livelihoods.
 
uberflieger
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Wed Sep 28, 2016 11:59 pm

I'm excited to learn about the longhaul expansion. More flights to North Amerika? 8-)
 
F9Animal
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 3:14 am

I really hope they can pull through this. Are the wet leased planes going to be AB crewed? Does TUI keep the Air Berlin crews?

Dumb question. What happened to their 737's?
 
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kitplane01
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 4:56 am

NichCage wrote:
This is needed for the future of Air Berlin. By getting rid of flights in Europe as well as increasing long haul with turn the airline around. This is also a good move because while Air Berlin may compete with Lufthansa, it's better than letting EasyJet and Ryanair expand in Germany.


And I thought nationalism was gone inside the EU.
 
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seahawk
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 5:04 am

I wonder how they will survive. Getting rid of the leisure routes is getting rid of the core of AB. They were built around the Mallorca Shuttle and in my own experience those routes always had high to very high load factors. Maybe we can have LTU back as the brand of the leisure ops.
 
ba319-131
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 5:45 am

F9Animal wrote:
I really hope they can pull through this. Are the wet leased planes going to be AB crewed? Does TUI keep the Air Berlin crews?

Dumb question. What happened to their 737's?



- The 737's were all leaving anyway, this part of a previous plan.
 
spacecookie
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 6:30 am

ba319-131 wrote:
F9Animal wrote:
I really hope they can pull through this. Are the wet leased planes going to be AB crewed? Does TUI keep the Air Berlin crews?

Dumb question. What happened to their 737's?



- The 737's were all leaving anyway, this part of a previous plan.


One of the bad decisiones they have made.
Sell owned 737 to lease a320/321..
 
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RWA380
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 6:40 am

It's a solid restructuring, they are roughly 50% of the carrier they were. It shows they do expect it to turn around, as to if it does, we'll see, as in any airline restructure it'll come down to the guys at the helm & those who are customer contact employees.
 
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seahawk
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 6:48 am

spacecookie wrote:
ba319-131 wrote:
F9Animal wrote:
I really hope they can pull through this. Are the wet leased planes going to be AB crewed? Does TUI keep the Air Berlin crews?

Dumb question. What happened to their 737's?



- The 737's were all leaving anyway, this part of a previous plan.


One of the bad decisiones they have made.
Sell owned 737 to lease a320/321..


Selling the 737 gave them money, money they needed.
 
OO-VEG
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 7:22 am

seahawk wrote:
spacecookie wrote:
ba319-131 wrote:


- The 737's were all leaving anyway, this part of a previous plan.


One of the bad decisiones they have made.
Sell owned 737 to lease a320/321..


Selling the 737 gave them money, money they needed.


IIRC they had a few very bad deals with the 737 so they had to get rid of them.

Reading the fact they are going to axe so many aircraft and focus on DUS and TXL I think they are making some real steps into becomming a healthy airline again. I am not sure where the profits came from (holiday destinations / long haul / business?) but I think with the help of a good feed from Etihad they could be making something out of this. Wouldn't be surprised AB will feed a lot of EY pax to North America. Let's see if EY will upgrade their equipment to DUS in S17, that could be a sign AB is going the right way.
 
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zkojq
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 8:47 am

Does anyone know why they seem(ed) to turn over aircraft so quickly. At one stage I seem to remember them getting rid of lots of two/three year old 737s/A320s. Doesn't seem like a good idea for a company that's hemorrhaging cash.

A320s: D-ABNA, D-ABNB, D-ABFZ,
737s: D-ABLF, D-ABMI, D-ABMU,

Anyway, the writing is now on the wall. Lufthansa's market position gets ever stronger. LH is smart to preemptively shift a lot of flying to their LCC (Eurowings) to gain a good chunk of marketshare in preparation for when Air Berlin nodoubt goes completely belly up a few years down the road and Ryanair + Easyjet get lots of their slots.

Feeling sorry for the employees, as ever.
 
aviationaware
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:08 am

zkojq wrote:
Does anyone know why they seem(ed) to turn over aircraft so quickly. At one stage I seem to remember them getting rid of lots of two/three year old 737s/A320s. Doesn't seem like a good idea for a company that's hemorrhaging cash. .


Air Berlin had quite a few of the most terrible leasing contracts in the industry with lessors owned by AB founder Joachim Hunold's orbit (hence his anagram nickname Unhold, which is German for fiend), which were gradually shaken off since Etihad got in. Needless to say that it didn't help much, since AB had and has much more less superficial problems.

I am of the opinion that this is too little, too late. This seems mostly designed by Lufthansa to deny Easyjet and Ryanair more market share in the wake of an uncontrolled collapse of AB. Air Berlin's balance sheet is a disgrace and won't much improve through this restructuring. A smaller airline will also have a harder time recouping the tremendous negative equity that was amassed over the past decade.

A restructuring by way of bankruptcy would have made much more sense in my eyes and might still come.
 
smi0006
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:13 am

I confess I don't know too much about the German market, but the plan seems to make sense to me. Wet lease the aircraft for six years, shrink your business to Redefine yourself, and regain control, then as the wet lease end you have your aircraft back to grow again!

Sounds like AB stretched themselves to thin, and tried to be everything to everyone, they lacked a true strategy and lost control of costs- seems they finally have a plan now.
 
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CARST
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:07 pm

LAX772LR wrote:
Interesting that they're going to (try to) keep their longhaul flights.... I thought that those would be a goner for sure.

Still will be shocked if it lasts. :(


From what I hear the longhaul routes of AB are HIGHLY profitable. The money is lost on the short- and medium-haul flights. That is why the new CEO said from the beginning he wants way more longhaul a/c and especially more routes to North America, because these routes print money. So you can expect for the longhaul routes to stay as long as AB doesn't get liquidated.

spacecookie wrote:
Sad to see how a once good looking company got killed by bad management.


It was the old management which killed AB. Joachim Hunold. And no one else. The credit crunch in 2009 didn't help, too. Right after the big aquisitions of LTU and dBA and integrating the TUI-fly business, too. On top Etihad made many errors after taking over and is now sorting them out with a new management in place...

thekorean wrote:
Just liquidize the company and create a new airline company, Air Germany.

And hub it at DUS.


Inside AB, the people running the company, would favour BER airport. That is the airport the whole company waits for since years. To finally operate at a real airport with proper connecting facilities in their home market. DUS will stay of course, since LH left the market is way to interesting, but it is clearly their second hub.

uberflieger wrote:
I'm excited to learn about the longhaul expansion. More flights to North Amerika?


That is the plan. Like I said above, flights to North America are the money printing routes within AB. Just because the company is in the red (big time), it doesn't mean that they don't have profitable routes.

kitplane01 wrote:
And I thought nationalism was gone inside the EU.


For many people it is gone, for some not. But wishing for an alliance-bound network carrier to stay, instead of LCCs to take over, has nothing to do with nationalism.

seahawk wrote:
I wonder how they will survive. Getting rid of the leisure routes is getting rid of the core of AB. They were built around the Mallorca Shuttle and in my own experience those routes always had high to very high load factors. Maybe we can have LTU back as the brand of the leisure ops.


If you hear inside the company, the old LTU people are part of the problem within AB. They still feel and think LTU instead of integrating into the new AB. Inside their buildings and offices at DUS airport, there is LTU signage and memorabilia everywhere.

spacecookie wrote:
One of the bad decisiones they have made.
Sell owned 737 to lease a320/321..


IMO they should have kept the 737s, too, because they are cheaper to operate. But the A32X series has advantages, too. And "sale and lease back" is a standard procedure in the airline business (and outside, too) for companies which are low on cash. Leasing is often not much more expensive than buying, especially, because you can get new equipment every few years once your leasing contract ends.

aviationaware wrote:
Air Berlin had quite a few of the most terrible leasing contracts in the industry with lessors owned by AB founder Joachim Hunold's orbit (hence his anagram nickname Unhold, which is German for fiend), which were gradually shaken off since Etihad got in. Needless to say that it didn't help much, since AB had and has much more less superficial problems.


Exactly what I heard, too. They paid 25-50% over market prices on these leasing contracts with the companies held by Hunold. When he left AB he basically made sure to still get a lot of money out of the company with these contracts. IMHO AB should have gone to court about these contracts. But perhaps Etihad didn't though it is worth the money/hassle.
 
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readytotaxi
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:43 pm

Does their Business Class make money, or would they be better having more Y class?
 
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Revelation
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Fri Sep 30, 2016 5:32 pm

MOL is none too pleased by all of this:

“Remarkably, and once again, it looks like Brussels [the European Commission] will not do anything about [the deal]. They blocked the proposed merger between Ryanair and Aer Lingus—which was going to shake up the foundations of the European aviation—three times. Yet, Lufthansa can buy Air Berlin,” Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary told Aviation Daily here amid the LCC’s announcement of its expanded summer 2017 schedule for Belgium.


Ref: http://aviationweek.com/commercial-avia ... erlin-deal

While LH is not 'buying' AB, such a close linkage between the #1 and #2 carriers in Germany probably should get some scrutiny from the competitive point of view.
 
chieft
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Fri Sep 30, 2016 10:41 pm

Rumours saying, thathat Air Berlin and TUIFly will join forces in a new airline.
That is, what German newspaper "Handelsblatt " reports.
 
bennett123
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Sat Oct 01, 2016 6:45 am

Perhaps the EU do not want the foundations of European aviation shaken up.
 
keitherson
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Sat Oct 01, 2016 8:23 am

If they want to focus on long-haul connecting traffic then they'd better start fixing their sad excuse of a lounge for oneworld at DUS and the "waiting areas" at TXL.
 
Glareskin
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Sat Oct 01, 2016 12:12 pm

mxaxai wrote:
So it's finally happening...
[*] withdraw from the Hamburg and Stuttgart markets

Wow! A couple of years ago I had multiple flight options per day between DUS and STR. Since LH withdrew there was only the Q400 flights wth AB and now nothing. How is that possible between two booming cities in Germany?
 
mxaxai
Topic Author
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Sat Oct 01, 2016 12:58 pm

Glareskin wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
So it's finally happening...
[*] withdraw from the Hamburg and Stuttgart markets

Wow! A couple of years ago I had multiple flight options per day between DUS and STR. Since LH withdrew there was only the Q400 flights wth AB and now nothing. How is that possible between two booming cities in Germany?

They are only handing over non-DUS/TXL flights. I fully expect the Q400 to stay on that route. Apparently, most Q400 flying will remain as it is, since their operator LGW is an independent company.
 
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SQ22
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Sat Oct 01, 2016 5:47 pm

chieft wrote:
Rumours saying, thathat Air Berlin and TUIFly will join forces in a new airline.
That is, what German newspaper "Handelsblatt " reports.


Here is the link to the rumor (behind a paywall, in German):

http://www.handelsblatt.com/my/unterneh ... vYg7wX-ap1

And another German source:

http://www.airliners.de/tuifly-air-berl ... hmen/39704

According to the source AB would integrate HG into the new airlines as well as the aircrafts which are operated by X3 for AB (20 plus 14 aircraft in total).
 
Glareskin
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Re: Air Berlin restructuring announced, to wet lease aircraft to LH Group (EW), more job cuts announced

Sat Oct 01, 2016 7:11 pm

mxaxai wrote:
Glareskin wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
So it's finally happening...
[*] withdraw from the Hamburg and Stuttgart markets

Wow! A couple of years ago I had multiple flight options per day between DUS and STR. Since LH withdrew there was only the Q400 flights wth AB and now nothing. How is that possible between two booming cities in Germany?

They are only handing over non-DUS/TXL flights. I fully expect the Q400 to stay on that route. Apparently, most Q400 flying will remain as it is, since their operator LGW is an independent company.
True! And all the flights I take on this route are full. It would be great if LH would start again, flying the E-jets with CityLine. But I guess that is not fitting their shitty German Wings strategy.

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