Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Daily: Korean Air and EVA Air eye Croatia stake

Asian interest in Croatia Airlines

Korean Air and Taiwan's EVA Air are reportedly eyeing a stake in Croatia's national carrier, the daily "Večernji list" has reported. The two are said to be perusing a 49% share in the airline, as the Croatian government seeks a strategic partner for its national carrier for a second time. The government has been focusing on potential investors from Asia. Recently, the Croatian Prime Minister held talks with Japan Airlines (JAL) in Tokyo, presenting the carrier with business opportunities in his country. In the past, several airlines from Asia, including Garuda Indonesia and Hainan Airlines, expressed interest in purchasing a stake in Croatia Airlines. Carriers from the Far East rarely participate in public tenders and equity investments are a result of negotiations. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a World Bank subsidiary, is expected to identify potential investors for Croatia Airlines by the end of October.

Korean Air, which is a member of the Sky Team alliance, bought a 44% stake in ČSA Czech Airlines in 2013 for an initial five-year period. The purchase price of 2.64 million euros, offered by Korean Air, was based on the last known value of Czech Airlines’ shares, set by a court-appointed expert. The partnership helped generate several projects including the addition of an Airbus A330-300 jet into Czech Airlines’ fleet, leased from Korean Air, and the introduction of long haul flights between Prague and Seoul. On the other hand, EVA Air was founded in 1989 and is privately owned. A member of Star Alliance, it currently serves over seventy destinations with 63 aircraft.

The Croatian Minister for Sea, Transport and Infrastructure, Siniša Hajdaš Dončić, said recently, “The World Bank is our consultant and we are looking for the best possible solution, whether it be recapitalisation or privatisation. We are interested in the survival of Croatia Airlines, in keeping the name, but the state wants to gradually withdraw from majority to minority ownership in the company. Without a foreign partner, Croatia Airlines is not likely to survive on the market”. Croatia Airlines itself sees a strategic partner as an opportunity to achieve its growth targets for next year at a quicker pace. CEO Krešimir Kučko recently said, "For quicker growth and a return to the position we once held, but lost due to restructuring imposed by the EU, fresh capital is certainly welcome and it should come through recapitalisation". The Croatian government is looking to rap-up the carrier's privatisation process prior to the next parliamentary elections which must be held no later than February next year.

51 comments:

  1. Can't be since our local expert said there won't be any interest in OU.

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  2. Now this would be interesting. If one of those airline bought OU then we would have real competition on our hands in ex-Yu.

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  3. OT: AirSerbia gives coffee on one of its fligths....

    Just kidding, I saw a news about OU so I quickly wrote something about ASL so local aviation society can be at peace.

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    1. Also Vučić wont be happy at all!

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    2. I do wonder what the ramifications of a strong Croatia Airlines with a good partner could be.

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    3. As long as it happens after the elections Vucic will not care.

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  4. As much as I hope for a positive outcome for OU, neither of these airlines seem particularly plausible. Korean is already struggling with CSA and trying to build a viable hub-and-spoke European network, which is hardly complementary with creating another hub 1000 km to the south. EVA on the other hand flies to a total of four destination in the whole of Europe, one of them being Vienna, so it's hard to see them building a hub out of Zagreb when there are much more pressing markets to conquer. I guess we'll see.

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    1. Korean would be a better option but I really can't see them succeed in Croatia if they could not succeed in ČSA.

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  5. Refugee Air preparing to fly refugees from Serbia and Croatia to Sweden

    www.refugeeair.org

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  6. We'll just have to wait til the end of October, being interested in OU doesn't mean anything until they give their offers! Wish them good luck!

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    1. Agreed. I remember Garuda's CEO publicly announcing their interest in OU and then they didn't even bid (might I add I'm happy they didn't).

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    2. Completely agree, hope some other carriers will bid, I think OU could be privatized this time!

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    3. I don't see any airline investing in OU, unless like with JU, the strategic investor has the right to change and appoint the management team - period !

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  7. This will be the Croatian government's finishing act. They need to pull a rabbit out of the hat to have any hope of not being decimated at the elections.

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  8. Kad sam pisao koje bi kompanije mogle kupiti CTN Korean je bio na 12. mjestu od 20 mogućih kompanija. EVA (samo 62 aviona od čega 23 uskotrupca i 8 cargo aviona, sa 7.800 zaposlenika, 3 milijarde EUR prihoda - što znači da su tek nekih 6-7 puta veći od CTN-a) je premala da kupi Croatiu, uz to imali su u prošloj godini gubitak od 35 milijune EUR; i to svakako ne bi bilo dobro za nas.


    KOREAN - Ne baš dobar odabir za Hrvatsku

    Pozitivne strane:
    + Mogli bi konkurirati za Croatiu samo zato da to ne učini nacionalna konkurencija Asiana koja je bliža Croatiji radi članstva u istoj alijansi
    + ovo bi podržale i Air France, ali i MZL Zagreb koji su Francuzi i podržali bi suradnju sa Air Franceom ili nekim drugim članom SkyTeama
    + Korean je velika kompanija i može si priuštiti ovu kupnju
    + Korean već leti za ZAG kroz chartere za svoje turiste, u Hrvatsku je u 2014. došlo preko 70.000 korejskih turista i ova brojka rapidno raste, pa je dosta izvjesno da će ova linija postati i redovna

    Negativne strane:
    - Već su vlasnici ČSA i usmjerili su svoje putnike preko Praga, pa im Zagreb nikako ne bi bio niti europski hub niti išta bitno
    - U Europi lete za Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Istanbul, London, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Prague, Rome, Vienna, Zurich, što znači da lete za vrlo mnogo destinacija direktno, a poglavito što preko Praga i svoje kompanije ČSA obavljaju velik broj code-share destinacija

    Jako malo kupuju

    Kompanija ima vlasništvu tek jednu kompaniju
    • Air Busan – regionalni subsidiary Asiane

    A ima udjele i u:
    • ČSA (44%) – akvizija 2013. godine

    Osrednji potencijali za kupnju CTN

    Asiana i Air Busan zajedno imaju tek 98 zrakoplova, među kojima i A320 obitelj (kompatibilno sa Croatiom), ali i A380.

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    1. Please write in English.

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    2. U negativne posljedice ste zaboravili staviti izlaz iz STARa,te osim penalizacije za istu radnju i nove odnose tj izravnu bitku sa LH,OS etc,gubitak većeg broja slotovak koji su u vlasništvu LH a koristi ih OU,prijelaz na novu IT platformu..........

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    3. Kazna je 2 milijuna EUR, što i nije nešto strašno, konkurencija LH, OS, LX je ozbiljan problem, ali bilo je već primjera gdje su neke kompanije iz jedne alijanse kupovale druge kompanije iz druge alijanse i nisu zahtjevale izlazak iz te prve alijanse.

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    4. I wouldn't rule out Korean just yet ... as also Q400 mentions further below, Korean hasn't really done anything for CSA, except leasing them one long-haul jet (for initially above market price, now decreased). It is true that the line PRG-Seoul is doing very well, but a large majority are p2p passengers, almost no transfer via PRG to other destinations.

      Furthermore, as I mentioned in another thread regarding CSA a few days ago, part of CSA's co-owner (Travel Service) was just bought by a Chinese investment company which claims to have major plans for both Travel Service (and thereby indirectly CSA) and Prague as a hub (first direct flight b/w PRG and Beijing starting next week, talk of another one b/w PRG and Shangai) ... so, I wouldn't be surprised if Korean sold its stake to Travel Service soon and might thus be looking for another opportunity in Europe ...

      Just my 2cents, though

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  9. Are we funding free holiday for some government officials in Seoul and Taipei?

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  10. This will all depend on how a possible buyer of OU views the Croatian market.

    Just because Korean or EVA have shown interest does not mean that they have a strategy to make Zagreb one of their hubs or that they will in case of EVA start flights to Zagreb.

    Korean has not done much with Czech Airlines since they bought 44%, time will tell if this changes. Maybe they will merge the 2 airlines, OU and OK.

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    1. That's one of the stupidest aviation related things I've read thus year.

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  11. Why do we need OU at the first place? I'm more than happy to have foreign carriers flying in and out of ZAG. Domestic route can be flown with some LCC.

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    1. Because of the tourist brand.

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    2. since when OU has such a brand outside of Croatia?

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    3. Why do we need OU?

      You might not but local economy probably does since it employs around 1000 people who make living there, pay taxes and spend their earnings locally so that your local vendors can make some living. Also, if OU has some profit, guess what, it goes straight into the state budget (theoretically). So yes, there are many reasons, the easiest thing to do is outsource everything but that way you are gaining some but society as a whole gains very litlle.

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  12. Ja opet mislim da to nije nista ozbiljno. Tesko ce ta prodaja dobro zavrsiti. Bilo bi lijepo, ali po meni, jako, jako tesko.

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  13. OT: Shall we know something more about Air Serbia flights to US tomorrow?

    Good luck, Croatia Airlines, I sincerely hope they find a good partner, we need more competition in the region!

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    1. doubt it. supervisory board meeting got cancelled.

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    2. OMG another date passes by and nothing happens... just like with the airport saga.

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    3. Nemoj govoriti da je otkazan, pocece INN da place... Sutra ce objaviti letove BNX - JFK

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    4. Pa G Vucic je u Americi pa cete sutra cuti vesti ;)
      INN-NS

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    5. Које вести тачно сем да га је Конгрес испљувао због корупције.

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    6. The Chicago Department of Aviation says, "We write to express our support for Air Serbia's application for an Exemption and Foreign Air Carrier Permit that would allow Air Serbia to provide service to the US (on a codeshare-only basis at this time, but potentially directly in the future), and we urge you to grant the requested authority without delay. Currently, only one US carrier operates scheduled services to Serbia by placing its code on a European partner carrier. Granting the requested authority for additional one-stop service to Belgrade would inject much-needed competition into the US-Serbia market, offering additional options for passengers and stimulating demand for additional service. We are encouraged by the recent successful negotiation of an Open Skies Agreement between the US and Serbia, and the new opportunities it could eventually provide Chicago-area travelers - particularly a potential nonstop Air Serbia Chicago - Belgrade service". It adds, "The US is home to the largest Serbian Diaspora outside of Europe, with a large portion of this population residing in Chicago. The availability of a new US - Serbia air service provides an important opportunity to connect Serbian families in the US and abroad, and fosters the creation and growth of US - Serbian business and economic connections, which are key to the continued economic development of Serbia. The new one-stop service would provide a vital link to Belgrade, the political and economic center of Serbia, and a "sister city" to Chicago since 2005". In the letter, Commissioner Ginger S. Evans concludes, "The benefit of added US - Serbia service to the large ethnic community of interest centered in Chicago, in addition to the promotion of further competition in the US - Serbia market, strongly support the grant of the requested authority to Air Serbia".

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  14. Croatia Airlines Privatization Fail

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    1. There's no fail with the privatisation - it hasn't closed closed or finished yet. What however is a FAIL - is the current management of OU .... No plans on investing in their product - no new lounge in their new terminal and no plans for wi-fi onboard while regional rivals continue to invest and move forward. That is HUGE fail

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  15. KE je ulozio tolike pare u PRG i nema sigurno nameru duplu vise da baci u ZAG .
    A pritom nema potrebe da dalje Korejski putnici idu preko ZAG posto sam KE pokriva sva bitna trzista sirokotrupnim Avionima.
    BR neverujem da ima nameru posle minusa i pada LF da ulaze u slabe Evropske Aviokompanije a vec sami lete za njima najprece destinacije u EU.
    INN-NS

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    1. Sačuvaj me bože INN-NSSeptember 17, 2015 at 1:45 AM

      Mako Cicko, Croatijina danas u usporedbi sa Jatom kad ga je kupovao Etihad je živa premija.

      Croatia danas bez dugova, Jat imao enormne dugove.
      Croatia danas profitabilna, Jat je zadnji puta bio profitabilan još u SFRJ.
      Croatia danas ima modernu i mladu flotu, Jat imao prstaru flotu, vjerovato najstariju u Europi.
      Croatia danas je članica Star Alliancea, Jat nitko nije hito niti u jednu alijansu.
      Croatia danas je kompanija sa dobrim imageom, Jat je imao katastrofalan image.
      Croatia danas ima 2 milijuna putnika, Jat je imao 800.000.
      Croatia danas ima velike potencijale koje Jat nije imao (turizam, daleko jača ekonomija, Europska unija, NATO).

      I svejedno je Etihad "bacio" novac na tako oronulu kompaniju kao što je Jat. Što misliš da su ovi u Etihadu kronične budale ili su bili pijani kad su "bacali" novac? Ili su ljudi imali viziju kako da od totalnog smeča i gliba naprave dobru kompaniju?

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    2. Kaj bum Korean napravio od OU? Da vidimo.. imam ideju! Uštedeli bi 1166km da lete ICN-ZAG-GRU umesto ICN-LAX-GRU! Malo li je? Ako počnu i Rio, još bolje! Eto ga biznis kejs! Čekaj malo, pa to mogu i sada preko Praga! Šta drugo?

      Mogli bi da lete ICN-ZAG (a mogu i sada) a onda bi turiste vodili sa Q400 na more. Ne sa Q400, možda nešto bolje... znam! Korean bi mogao da finansira kupovinu lepih Embaer E190 aviona za OU da se Koreanski turisti voze jet avionom od ZAG do mora! Genialno! Samo da vidim da li se brojke za biznis kejs slažu... pišem dva, pamtim tri... evo ga! Kako se opet ne slažu?

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    3. @1:45 Kako mislis OU je danas bez dugova, mislis u prosloj godini?

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    4. Ovo stvarno ne razumijem. Što fali Q400? Istom logikom se može postaviti pitanje zašto bi Etihad, do vraga letio do BEG i onda prastarim ATR-ovima dalje za Podgoricu i Tivat? Uostalom Croatia već broj svojih konektiranih linija ima sa A320 obitelji, a u slučaju kupnje od strane Koreana sigurno bi taj broj i još narastao.

      Korean očito gubi u ČSA. Kinezi već sada imaju preko 50% udjela u ČSA, a kupuju od malih dioničara. Tu Korean sa manjinskim udjelom nikako nema više isti interes i nije nevjerovatno da proda dio ili čak sav taj udio. Nije li onda logično da traže novog partnera. Malenog i jeftinog koji će pokriti onaj dio konektiranog tržišta kojeg sami ne drže, a sa velikim brojem linija koje imaju prema Europi svakako ne trebaju neku jaku kompaniju.

      Konačno, nije li Korean već zatražio dozvole za letove prema Hrvatskoj, nema li već danas on 15-tak letova godišnje, ne raste li broj Korejskih turista svake godine za velik dvoznamenkasti postotak, nema li u Hrvatskoj već sada preko 100.000 koreanskih turista, od čega čak 75.000 u Zagrebu? Ne bi li taj broj još bitno porastao da linija postane redovna i da ima veći broj frekvencija uz mogućnost presjedanja i u Zagrebu i u Seoulu?

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    5. Sačuvaj me bože INN-NSSeptember 17, 2015 at 11:51 AM

      Država je 2012. preuzela ogroman dug Croatie Airlines kako bi je napravila konkurentnm i poželjnom za prodaju. Upravo zato provodi se petogodišnji program restrukturacije jer je na 70-tak milijuna EUR otpisanih dugaova još toliko morala "pribaviti" i sama CTN prodajom opreme, otpuštanjem viška djelatnika, raskidom ugovora o leasingu i sl. mjerama, a što su pravila Europske unije.

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  16. Arsenal došao u Zagreb sa 757-200 Titan Airwaysa. To je onaj ljepotan sa kojim je dva puta došla i Engleska reprezentacija. Business klas konfiguracija sa samo 80 sjedala. Naprosto vam sline cure kad ga vidite izvana, a počnete plakati kad ga vidite iznutra.

    I plakali su i oni na putu kući. Jer su popili 2:1 za Dinamo. U klupskoj blagajni 1.500.000,00 EUR Lige prvaka. I li ti ne baš planiranih +5% godišnjeg buđeta. Možda sa i uprava počasti igrače nekim udobnijim avionom, možda ovaj od Sea Aira sa 60 mjesta od kojih 16 u mega-vip-u.

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  17. kaj nije bilo nekih frka oko CSA / Etihada / Korean...barem se sjecam da mi je neko pricao....

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  18. This year 300 000 Koreans in Croatia, perhaps more, at least 200 000 Japanese and 140 000 Chinese, Zagreb is booming, now two Korean Restaurants in Zagreb.

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