Croatia Airlines - Adria merger blocked in 2012

Croatia Airlines and Adria planned merger in 2012 as both seek partners today

Croatia Airlines and Slovenia’s Adria Airways, which are now seeking strategic partners as they undertake their second privatisation effort, could have merged in 2012 had the Croatian-led initiative not been blocked by the governments from both countries. Initially, Adria proposed for all of the national carriers from the former Yugoslavia to boost ties and consider merging their operations in early 2012, however, the idea was struck down by Croatia Airlines, which at the time saw no interest in joining such an alliance. However, midway through 2012, the carrier suggested to its Slovenian counterpart to join forces and merge their operations into a single carrier, which could have created a strong airline in the region, reaping the benefits of operating bases in two different markets.

Mirko Tatalović, who was Croatia Airlines’ Manager for Strategic Development and Planning until July 2013, said the Croatian carrier was willing to merge its operations with Adria but also added that politicians were reluctant to carry through with the plan. Mr. Tatalović noted that a merger between Croatia Airlines and Adria would have been natural since both airlines have similar fleets, are members of Star Alliance and are today members of the European Union. He added that the second phase of the airline’s development would have included a merger with Montenegro Airlines noting that Croatia Airlines and Montenegro Airlines have a similar passenger structure due to the existing tourism industry in both countries. During 2011 and 2012, both Adria and Croatia Airlines intensified their cooperation, which included a fleet exchange program where the Croatian carrier would use some of Adria’s aircraft during the busy summer season. The Croatian Minister for Sea, Transport and Infrastructure, Siniša Hajdaš Dončić, met with his Slovenian counterpart on several occasion to discuss a possible merger of the two airlines, however the project never mustered enough political backing from either country.

Today, Croatia Airlines and Adria Airways find themselves in a similar situation. Both have been shortlisted for privatisation this year following a failed attempt in the past. Slovenia is seeking to sell up to 96% of its stake in Adria, with the country’s President, Borut Pahur, recently urging Qatar Airways to invest in the carrier. Meanwhile, the Croatian government foresees for a company from the European Union to acquire a majority stake in Croatia Airlines but those from outside the bloc will be limited to a 49% share. Adria Airways and Montenegro Airlines codeshare on each others’ flights between Ljubljana and Podgorica, while the Montenegrin carrier recently said it would launch flights to Zagreb, signalling the start of its cooperation with Croatia Airlines. Montenegro’s CEO, Daliborka Pejović, recently said, “Preparations for this service launch come as a result of serious talks between us and Croatia Airlines, with whom we want to establish successful, long-term and mutually beneficial cooperation”.

During 2014, Croatia Airlines, Adria Airways and Montenegro Airlines carried a joint total of 3.493.926 passengers with a fleet of over twenty aircraft. Among them Croatia Airlines is the busiest, handling 1.8 million passengers last year, followed by Adria at 1.1 million and Montenegro Airlines with 557.000 travellers carried in 2014.


  1. LJU and ZAG are too close together for this to work properly in my opinion. This airline wouldn't be big enough to have two hubs, especially so close together. Everyone would argue about which city gets to be the main hub.

  2. Adria is a name that could be equally fitting for all three airlines. If this merger did happen, it would have probably been the smartest name choice in my opinion.

  3. JU520 BEGLAX09:42

    Interesting........alles Arschlöcher diese scheiss korrupte Politikerbande und zwar von Slowenien bis in die unterste Spitze Kosovos.... damn it

    1. Anonymous11:54

      Bitter much, JU520 BEGLAX?

    2. JU520 BEGLAX12:07

      Yaeh man :-)

    3. Anonymous12:51

      Hope you feel much better now :)

    4. Anonymous20:02

      Alles sauhünd :-D

  4. Anonymous09:56

    Avion Er Srbije ostao bez točka

    1. Anonymous10:03

      57 passengers, good load... that's for sure. I guess this was the evening when ANJ went to ZAG.

    2. I remember I was on a LH A320 from FRA to LCA and we had to taxi back to the terminal because the pilot noticed something was not normal with one of the engines.
      Upon inspection they found a bird inside the engine. Of course we got a new aircraft and we arrived with a 90 minute delay.

      These things happen.

      I did not mind as our replacement aircraft was an A300-600.

    3. Anonymous15:51

      Fucking hell!!

      That'd scare the living shit out of me, someone should sue that airline for failing to maintain even basic safety standards.

      How can an airliner loose a fucking wheel, in middle of a take off!!! Seriously if someone doesn't see something wrong with that, you got to be the world's biggest psychopath.

    4. Anonymous15:56

      @NemjeeFebruary 22, 2015 at 11:12 AM

      One thing is a bird strike, the other being complete disregard for passenger safety, in this case fucking tier blew up cause mechanics failed to change the tire or thought its fine plane can fly and that's what counts.

      That mechanic should be fired on a spot! Life of 57 people on board is not something you can just dismiss that easy, this was preventable accident, but due to poor work ethics and rotten attitudes with in the airline shit happened, thankfully no one died this time.

    5. Well, I am just saying that someone in Lufthansa overlooked the fact that there was a bird stuck inside the engine... By the way, the bird strike occurred on the previous flight, not on our. I am just wondering how the pilot did not notice it while inspecting the aircraft.

      These things happen, the mechanic working on the flight should be held accountable for this incident.

      By the way, didn't this happen already once before? I think it was shortly before the takeover took place.

    6. Anonymous16:18

      It happened to Jat Airways a few years ago after departing Rome, the wheel on a B737 fell off. It also isn't that uncommon. Happened on Southwest recently.

    7. Thank you, I remember there being a story about it.

    8. Anonymous17:00

      Jebo vas AirSerbia tocak. Koji debili nemaju nista drugo nego da pricaju o tocku

    9. Anonymous18:33

      Anonymous February 22, 2015 at 5:00 PM
      ti si debil, jedan potpuni idiot, kretenčina samo takva. Ovo je bio više nego ozbiljan incident.

    10. Anonymous18:38

      Another story about missing wheel:

    11. Anonymous20:33

      Ljudi, ovo je ozbiljno. Ovdje se ne radi o mehaničkom serijskom problemu, nego o lošem održavanju aviona. I to nakon što je jedan ATR imao požar na motoru, i nakon što su dva mehaničara ozljeđena na tehničkom letu i završila u bolnici. Sve se to desilo u samo mjesec dana i na samo 5 ATR-ova. Mnogo je. Iskreno si postavljam pitanje sigurnosti Air Serbijinih ATR-ova.

    12. Anonymous21:01

      Jedino sto si izgleda namerno izostavio jeste da su mehanicari povredjeni zbog turbulencije pri sletanju (jake bure), a ne zbog problema sa avionom.

    13. Anonymous22:26

      Ma naravno, svaki dan mehaničari i putnici stradavaju radi turbulencije (jake bure). Samo rade turbulencije su završili u bolnici. Pa na svakom letu doživljavam turbulenciju i eto svaki puta zam završio u bolnici. Više se pitam jer mi se uopće isplati letjeti jer kad ukalkuliram hospitaliziranje radi turbulencija, možda je brže vlaskom.

      Majke ti koje su to turbulencije morale biti da su ljudi završili u bolnici. Pa zar stvarno netko očekuje da vjerujemo u ovakve bajke. A i vilenjaci su bili u avionu isto, jel da?

      Nego kad smo već kod bajki, kako to da pilotima nije bilo ništa ako su mehaničari završili u bolnici? Kako to da na avionu nema oštečenja ako su tubulencije bile takve da su smjestili dva mehaničara u bolnicu.

    14. Anonymous23:17

      Otpadanje točka jeste ozbiljan incident ali me interesuje koju ste kristalnu kuglu i tarot karte vas dvojica-trojica koristili da odmah utvrdite da se radi o loše, održavanju? Ono, nema potrebe da sačekamo rezultate istrage, sve ćete nam vi objasniti?

    15. Anonymous23:27

      Nije lose odrzavanje. Problem je mozda u dizajnu. Q400 ima dosta problema sa landing gear sistemom pa je dizajn upitan.

    16. Anonymous23:30

      AnonymousFebruary 22, 2015 at 10:26 PM

      1) Ocigleno ne znas puno o avijaciji kada ne znas kakve probleme moze turbluencija da izazove. Na skorasnjem letu United-a preko 20 putnika je povredjeno i avion je morao da napravi emergency landing zbog turbulencije.
      2) Piloti su bili u sedistu vezani, a prica se da mehaniciri niti su bili na sedistima niti vezani
      3) Sta ti tacno mislis da se desilo. Da ih je udarila struja? Oni nisu radili nista na avionu dok su leteli. Radila se kalibraza kompasa!
      4) Pre 11 dana sam leteo iz Tivta, istina Montenegro Airlines-om. Bila je stravicna turbulencija pri poletanju jer su vremenski uslovi tamo vec par nedelja jako losi.
      5) Nemam razloga da se vise raspravljam sa tobom. Ako ti je zelja da padne avion pa da se sladis, tvoj problem. Niti sam neki obozavalc Air Srbije, niti ih branim. Ovo sa tockom je ozbiljno, ali racunajuci povredu dva mehanicara zbog turbulencije je vise nego smesno. Uzgred, ako vec baratas nekim poluistinama, budi informisan da su mehaniciri odmah pusteni nakon pregleda.


    17. Anonymous00:41

      Nisu. Jedan je zadržan u bolnici. Dakle još jedan pokušaj zataškavanja i fabriciranja neisitna.

      Ajmo ovako. U samo mjesec dana 3 incidenta

      1. Motor se zapalio na ATR-u, avio se hitno vratio u Beograd

      2. Jake turbulencije, dva mehaničara završila u bolnici, jedna hospitaliziran tijekom kalibracije radara. Ili nisu poštovali proceduru a bili su u zoni toliko jake turbulencije da je to jako čudno, ili ne nešto drugo posrijedi. U svakom slučaju djelatnici Air Serbije zadobili tjelesne povrede tijekom leačta.

      3. Otpao kotač na avionu tijekom polijetanja. Najteži incident!

      I to sve u samo tri tjedna!


    18. Anonymous00:47

      Vazno je da niko ozbiljnije nije povredjen a cudno je cime se sladite.

    19. Anonymous06:04

      @ 12:41

      Ponekad se može dogoditi da bude nekoliko incidenata u kratkom razdoblju. Istraga obično utvrdi gdje je bio problem te je najbolje pričekati njezine rezultate. Tvoja teorija o lošem održavanju bi mogla biti jedno od mogučih objašnjenja no problem je u tome što to ne možeš tvrditi niti znati dok je istraga još uvijek u tijeku.

    20. Anonymous06:09

      Vezano za ovaj tocak, da li ste primetili da nigde nema sluzbene belske o ovom incidentu? Ni Aviation Herald koji objavljuje ove incidente nije zabelezio, niti se oglasio Aerodrom Beograd niti Air Serbia (za razliku od incidenta sa motorm). Jedino sto imamo je svedocenje putnika, 2 dana nakon sto se incident dogodio u medijima.

    21. Anonymous12:20

      A cover-up is the biggest mistake one can make in aviation because a bunch of incidents is usually led by an adverse event that has hard consequences.
      The managing board must think a lot about the incidents that have happened recently and the cause must be determined. And the problems that led to the cause for the chain of bad events must be solved.
      The first question the board should dwell on is why the workers are not interested in their jobs anymore. Why all those new airliners, which were announced, haven't been bought and come into operation.
      I wonder if it is all about that the non-transparent privatisation is the true reason for all of this. I wonder if the Prime Minister just talked the things up regarding the privatisation and the 8 new Airbuses, surely knowing they wouldn't be bought?
      Is it possible that, in Serbia, it's come to the point when politicians haven't got a shred of conscience or being so stupid to believe in miracles?
      At any rate, things are pretty serious.

    22. Anonymous13:12

      What are you rambling about this time?!?! The only airliner that was announced but not "bought" was third A320 lease that was instead leased as A319. Everything else you said is just a fantasy.

    23. Anonymous15:51

  5. JU520 BEGLAX10:00

    Sur it would hve been the right decisison to merge. No one needs this micro state airlines with 1 to 2 mio pax. Its impossible to survive fot them. ADRIA is a the best brand name for the region, the hub of course is Zagreb but Adria could have operated lots of flights from the coast to abroad. Today Thompson will fly 787 767 757 on a single day to DBV. Probably 80% of the coastal traffic is done by foreign carrier. A merger could reduce this reduce this percentage. Anyway waste of time to nerv about this, we wrote many times about all the opportunities which exist.
    On thing is sure local politicians are destroying lives, opportunities, hopes, progress, development every single day in the region. With their attitude they hve killed Yugoslavia and with their attitude they unable regional prosperity ever

    1. Anonymous16:03

      @JU520 BEGLAXFebruary 22, 2015 at 10:00 AM

      merger would have never worked, first off you had Croatian airlines with 2 million passengers and Adria with 1.1 million, Adria clearly would in this equation become an extension of Croatian Airlines with few managerial positioned field with Adria bosses, half the workforce would probably go as would all the CRJs,. Fleet would perhaps most likely swap them for additional DH400s since Croatian still has option for 4 more aircraft from Bombardier.

      Adria would cease to be and would most likely be used as a holiday off shoot of Croatian, and with current management of OU, it is totally unworkable solution. Ot is good it never happened, best for all.

    2. Anonymous21:48

      "Holiday off shoot" HAHHAha, where did you learn to speak EnglOsh? :D

  6. Anonymous10:05

    In retrospect, this would have been such a missed opportunity for Serbia.
    Then again, it goes to show how futile their efforts were since they could not strike a deal with Slovenes.

    Shame that both of these carriers are flying straight into bankruptcy. Lufthansa no longer cares for them, after all they are going to transfer 20 Embraer jets to Austrian Airlines.

    1. I don't think Serbia was invited to this project...

    2. Anonymous10:24

      Initially they were... JU's CEO even went for a meeting that was organised in Montenegro.

    3. Ah, thanks for he correction.

      Good thing that Jat didn't get swept into this project. BEG has the potential to be a small hub of 5 million pax or more, and I don't think this could have been achieved by merging with other ex-yu airlines.

    4. Anonymous11:05

      I think they could never agree on where the main hub should be; that is Belgrade vs Zagreb.

    5. From a purely objective viewpoint, probably Zagreb because West Europe is the biggest market for air travel in these countries, and it doesn't make sense to fly to BEG and then back track to ZAG, LJU, etc.

    6. JU520 BEGLAX12:00

      Serbia is fine now as with EY they re in a good environment.
      JP OU could also be the home Carriers of BH, Macedonia, Kosovo and eventually even MNE and be a good Star Alliance Regional coverage but as said a waste of time to talk about this

    7. Anonymous14:22

      OU were party poopers. EY will now merge them all with JU, one by one.

    8. Anonymous16:05

      @AnonymousFebruary 22, 2015 at 2:22 PM

      No it won't, EY can't bujy OU's 49% steak, Croatian government won't allow it, the EU won't allow it.

      Same with Adria., there are different rules with in the EU ;)

    9. Anonymous16:09

      ^ Yes it can buy up to 49% within the EU. Just like it bought 49% of Alitalia. Last time I checked Italy was in the EU, and yes long before Croatia.

  7. Anonymous10:25

    Back in 2012 all ex-yu airliners met to discuss possible cooperation and at that time Croatia Airlines rejected any possibility to work together with Jat Airways probably being afraid it would bring Yugoslav Airlines back to life.

    1. Anonymous10:32

      Funny how the lame duck was the only one to actually find a strategic partner.
      Slovenes were always realistic so I am sure they will find a way to keep Adria alive.

    2. Slovenes always had a history of being successful businessmen, relative to the rest of Ex-Yu, so I don't worry too much about Adria. They will find a way to keep it going if they want to.

    3. JU520 BEGLAX12:12

      Seeing in what conditions their companies are or that every single ski resort is runned by lossmaking companies, i m not sure if they are so succesful businessmen.

    4. Cevapi i Luk18:26

      ^ Well they are definitely better than us Serbs. We have sold everything in our country including our land ( deal with Arabs). Selling land is the worst business decision done in the history of the region. We did not sell a small portion of land to do property development ( like some countries do), but instead sold thousands and thousands of hectares of productive land in Vojvodina.

    5. Anonymous18:49

      Adria needs help so EY investing in 49% of Adria and "merging" it with Air Serbia would be great for both. Adria is open to work with Air Serbia, they also follow the rules and laws of EU but without OU's attitude.

    6. Anonymous19:44

      Anonymous 6:49 PM, what does "...they also follow the rules and laws of EU but without OU's attitude" mean, does it mean that Air Serbia follows the rules and laws of EU, and OU doesn't?

    7. Anonymous20:08

      For someone loitering here all the time and then ask the question about "EU rules and laws" means you are clearly not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

      Rarely a day goes by on this blog without annoying posts about certain new EU member that "follows all rules and laws of EU". Apparently Slovenia as a EU member is also trying to follow all rules and laws of EU (and good for them!) but visitors of this blog are not tortured by having someone force fed that info to them on a daily basis.

      To put it in simper terms so you can understand, I actually heard this from Slovenians themselves: Slovenia (BTW law abiding EU country) is a great business partner for Serbia but without Croatia's attitude.

  8. Anonymous11:03

    Of course it was blocked because it was too big and serious of a project for our governments and would require getting rid of political backed management. In mid-2012 Kucko took over at Croatia Airlines and any notion of the merger fell through. Srecko Simunovic (former Croatia CEO) was very interested in this. I think this would have been excellent for Croatia and Adria. You would get a much bigger market, you have a simmilar fleet, same alliance. It would have been interesting. Instead now they are throwing millions of EUR on privatization advisors, consultants etc.

  9. Anonymous11:54

    OU wanted to merge, but not with JU.

    1. Anonymous13:04

      Well, good luck to them for allowing their nationalistic bitterness to get in way of a sound business proposal.

    2. Anonymous22:26

      @1:04 pm

      Sorry but both are to blame for the nationalistic bitterness. Time to move on.

    3. Anonymous08:18

      Actually, JU never was. They were quite open for this cooperation but then the others stopped inviting them... which we can see today was a good thing.

    4. Anonymous08:19

      I would also like to point out that it was JU who re-launched flights between Serbia and Croatia and it was that same Croatia which banned their flights the following season.
      If anyone is to be blamed for nationalism then it's Croatia.

  10. Anonymous13:12


    1. Anonymous13:39

      Tekst je gore na @9.56 samo sa točkom bez kotača.

    2. Anonymous13:44

      Ne mogu da verujem da ljudi nprave toliku paniku...I, ako se ne varam, u pitanju je B733 star oko 30 godina, ako se lose odrzava nije ni cudo sto se nesto ovak desi.

    3. Anonymous17:16

      ATR72 je imao problem sa točkom, 737-300 YU-ANJ je bio zamena koji je bez problema sleteo u Zagreb. 737 nisu još počeli redovno da šalju za ZAG, ali za LJU jesu pojedinim danima.

  11. Anonymous14:09

    OT: Belgrade-Brač?

    And which type of aircraft can take up to 80 pax?

    1. Maybe Croatia Airlines' Q400?

    2. Anonymous14:28

      Thanks. Will be a nice line. It's a charter though.

    3. Anonymous14:40

      Could it be BH Airlines ATR72 as a charter?

    4. Anonymous16:05

      I think ATR 72 can take up to 66 pax

    5. Anonymous22:37

      I really wish ASL would get 6-10 Q400s and replace the ATRs. I know people will say ATR is more economical and few million cheaper...but Q400 carries more pax and has a high speed/low speed cruise options, which can easily match ATR fuel burn. On the other hand, in high speed mode Q400 can achieve routes which ATR can't (time vs distance vise). It could do up to 2hrs+ routes, and increase frequencies or supplement/replace some routes that Airbus does during low season, mid day hours etc.
      Or they have to get the new 500/600 series asap! :)

    6. I agree that Q400s could be a good possibility for JU, especially considering that deliveries could start rather soon, instead of waiting 5+ years for ATRs.

      Also, Bombardier is in a bad financial state momentarily, so they might be fishing for some cash to alleviate the pressure.

      JU needs to spam Q400s. It is a real strategy, just look at Alaska Air, Flybe, airBaltic, Austrian, etc.

    7. Anonymous10:10

      I agree,
      The list price of the Q400 could easily be dropped because of BBD's current financial state.

  12. Anonymous22:17

    Mene vise zanima kako ce se CTN odbraniti od silnih LCC ove sezone protiv kojih nemaju sanse.

    1. Anonymous22:25

      Decko, ili se pravis da si glup ili stvarno nemas pojma. CTN je klasicna, standardna, "fulservis" kompanija, koja ne pruza samo P2P usluge, kao sto to rade LCC-ovi. Trziste LCC-ova i trziste standardnih kompanija su 2 razlicita trzista, i CTN apsolutno nema potreba braniti se od LCC-ova jer i jedni i drugi imaju svoj segment putnika koji ne zadire u onaj drugi segment. Uz to, Hrvatska godisnje ima skoro 7 miliona avioputnika, a CTN prevozi manje od 2 milona, tako da LCC-ovi Hrvatskoj cine uslugu dovozeci joj putnike, uglavnom strance, turiste, koji finansiraju hrvatski budzet, a koje ovakva CTN jednostavno ne moze prevesti jer za to nema kapaciteta. Dakle reci da CTN nema sanse zbog LCC-ova koji lete za Hrvatsku je ili zlonamernost ili notorna glupost. Biraj sam.

    2. Anonymous22:38

      A319 od CTN ima samo Y konfiguraciju kao i LCC.
      A ove godine ce CTN imati malo od kolaca sa primorja.

    3. Anonymous10:10

      Al' kad vam ga INN zavuce samo da trepcete okicam. Izvukao vam je najgoru stvar kod CTN, flota koja nema veze sa stanjem saobracaju u Hrvatskoj, samo jos da pocnete kao Arija da pricate o hibridnoj verziji kompanije. A decko jos nema ni vozacku u Austriji.

    4. Anonymous22:21

      Jos ove godine se OU moze koprcati sledece ce vec biti izuzetno losa po njih al hrvati ko hrvati tek kao potone brod onda priznaju da su udarili u santu leda do tad cvrsto negiranje.

  13. Anonymous04:01

    JAT 2.0 eh? Led by Slovenia of all places. Very amusing...


  14. Anonymous17:52


    Postujem ovaj site i pogledam ga skoro svaki dan...moram se pozaliti na kolicinu gluposti i ne znanja kod pojedinih komentara...

    Minimum ovog sitea bi barem trebao biti ppl i jedno 200 sati da donekle ima smisla


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