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LOT Polish Airlines to Purchase Condor
The owner of the national airline of Poland, LOT, has announced it has purchased former Thomas Cook-owned carrier, Condor. The German leisure carrier has been without an owner since the collapse of Thomas Cook earlier last year. The combined carriers will operate 140 aircraft, serving 20 million passengers between bases in Poland and Germany. The deal is still subject to antitrust approval.
The details of the purchase have not been released to the public, but the Condor brand is expected to continue to operate. The announcement has been heralded by the Polish government as a sign of the strength of the Polish economy. It is also a signal of change from Polish brands being purchased by foreign investors. The deal is expected to be fully finalized by April, per the Financial Times.
After the collapse of Condor’s owner, Thomas Cook, last year the airline was also on the brink of collapse. However, the German government believed the airline was viable and granted them a €380 million loan to continue operations. The loan gave the airline six months to find a new owner. If approved, the new airline will repay the loan in full after the completion of the deal.
The deal will provide job security for Condor’s nearly 5,000 employees and the passengers that travel on the carrier. However, there is some doubt from financial experts on the combined carrier. Condor’s fleet is made up of older aircraft that will soon need to be replaced to remain competitive. The average age of the Condor fleet is 18.4 years old.
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