Sale of Irish airline Cityjet to be signed today

CityJet will continue to fly from Dublin to Paris and London City Airport.German player Intro Aviation poised to buy airline from Air France KLM

Intro announced late last year it had agreed to buy CityJet from its owner, Air France KLM, for an undisclosed sum. It emerged yesterday that the deal will be signed today and will be completed in four weeks when the new owner will take control of the Dublin-based airline.

However, the airline will maintain a code-sharing partnership with Air France KLM, meaning passengers using CityJet to connect to flights by the French airline can travel on a single ticket.

Original code

Today’s move also means that from Sunday CityJet will revert to using its original “WX” code, which it swapped for “AF” after Air France KLM took it over.

The management, led by chief executive Christine Ourmieres, will remain with the airline, but there are likely to be changes to the board.

Businessman Pat Byrne, who founded CityJet, is chairman of the company.

Air France KLM put CityJet up for sale last year. Intro and Dublin-based ASL Aviation, owner of cargo operator Air Contractors, were shortlisted from an initial list that is understood to include up to 20 parties.

The successful bidder’s owner Intro Group was founded by German businessman Hans Rudolf Wöhrl and is headquartered in Reichenschwand.

Mr Wöhrl established and expanded NFD, now known as Eurowings, to become the biggest independent German regional carrier. Since it sold NFD, Intro Group has maintained an active involvement in the airline sector through its subsidiary Intro Aviation.

Operating base

CityJet will continue to fly from Dublin to Paris and London City Airport, where it has its main operating base.

In 2012, the last year for which figures are available, CityJet posted a loss of €209 million.

This included an operating shortfall of €21.3 million and exceptional charges of €185 million.

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