New Alitalia: only A220, A320 and 787


The “new” airline Alitalia could rationalize its fleet to just three families, Airbus A220 for CityLiner, A320 for medium-haul, and Boeing 787 Dreamliner for the long-haul.

According to Corriere Della Sera, the now renationalized Italian company has already started negotiating with Airbus and Boeing on a modernized fleet. Alitalia currently operates 65 Airbus single aisles (A319, A320, and A321), fourteen A330-200s, eleven Boeing 777-200ER, and one Boeing 777-300ER, plus 19 Embraer 170 and 190 – and no aircraft awaiting delivery.

The renewal would, therefore, see the Embraer leave the fleet, replaced by A220s (probably -100 and -300), and the Triple Sept and A330 replaced by Dreamliner (787-8 and 787-9). For single-aisle vehicles, daily sources estimate that the choice of the A320neo would cost Alitalia 44.5 million euros per aircraft on average; the move to the 737 family would have been ruled out due to transition costs. The replacement of wide-body aircraft by Dreamliner would be partly justified by the fact that some parts of the 787s are manufactured in Italy; Airbus would, however, have presented a counter-offer with A330neo and A350 at knockdown prices, and an all-Airbus fleet would undoubtedly be favored by Europe, which has just loaned $ 209 billion to Italy …

All new aircraft are expected to be purchased new with discounts « of at least 50% », and are expected to bring « operational benefits of 100 million euros per year, in addition to savings of around 200 million euros due to lower fuel consumption ”.

No agreement has been signed and the two manufacturers as always decline to comment on ongoing negotiations, but « first contacts » have reportedly been made. Let us recall that the new Alitalia-Tai, with Francesco Caio as chairman and at his side the managing director and CFO Fabio Lazzerini (former head of Emirates in Italy), has a « mattress » of 3 billion euros. Among the ambitions displayed at the beginning of July the opening of new domestic routes, in particular to the south of Italy (Bari, Brindisi, Reggio di Calabria, Lampedusa, Pantelleria), and much more vaguely a resurgence of « competition on the markets international ”.

Placed under « extraordinary administration » for more than two years, following the rejection by the unions of a stimulus plan for the shareholder Etihad Airways, and have already received two state loans of several hundred million euros, the SkyTeam alliance company will have to be « really different » from the previous Alitalia, otherwise, the European Commission could refuse state aid. As for the unions, they still expect a reduction of 4,000 to 5,000 jobs; in April when Alitalia had lost 97% of its turnover, they had reached an agreement with the management to put more than 6,600 workers on technical unemployment.

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