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Air France-KLM withdraws bid for Czech Airlines

Air France-KLM, Europe's biggest carrier, has decided to drop plans to buy Czech Airlines (CSA), leaving Czech company Unimex Group as the only remaining bidder.


AFP - Aviation giant Air France KLM, Europe's biggest airline, has dropped its bid to buy the Czech state carrier Czech Airlines (CSA), the group said Wednesday, leaving just one Czech bidder in the running.

"The current economic environment has significantly impacted the airline business," Air France KLM explained in a statement, confirming that it had informed the Czech finance ministry of its intention to pull out.

"Under such circumstances, Air France KLM believes that CSA might focus on developing and implementing a stand-alone recovery plan aimed at restoring its profitability," the company added.

"In this context Air France KLM wishes to further strengthen the existing partnership between the two groups and to continue to explore with CSA any new areas of cooperation that could be of mutual benefit to each company."

In February, the Czech Republic invited offers for a two-stage sell off of its 91.5 percent stake in the airline. Air France KLM and the Czech company Unimex Group were chosen as candidates for the second round of bids.

The French-based giant's withdrawal leaves Unimex's as the only bid on the table. A final decision will be taken before September 30.

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