How has this all come about? Qatar Airways acquired a 49% stake in AQA, the holding company of Meridiana, in September 2017, whilst Alisarda, keeps a majority 51%.
Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker said: “There will be a positive trend in the European market. We aim to become one of the top Italian airlines: elegant, sophisticated, international and innovative. We will make Italians proud in the world,”
Ironically Italy’s largest airline, who also had the aim of being elegant, sophisticated, international and innovative" and backed by the UAE - Alitalia, now with a huge 'DISTRESS SALE' banner draped over the fleet waits in hope for a 'shining knight' in the form of a buyer with deep pockets to show themselves...
It was back in 2014, UAE’s Etihad Airways acquired a 49% Alitalia’s stake with the aim of to transforming the airline. But due to a complex of historical issues and poor staff relations, it just didn't work out, and in May 2017, Alitalia declared bankruptcy as Etihad Airways made it known that it will not extend any additional funds to Alitalia.
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