Government outlines Croatia Airlines plans

State to privatise Croatia Airlines after stabilisation

The newly formed Croatian government has outlined its plans for the national carrier, which could see its privatisation process pushed back. The Croatian Minister for Sea, Transport and Infrastructure, Oleg Butković, says the airline should first stabilise its operations and business before it is privatised, noting that this can only be achieved by increasing the carrier's competitiveness and strengthening its market position. Once these conditions are met, Mr Butković believes a strategic partner should be found with "extensive experience in the commercial aviation sector, which would ensure network expansion and market share growth". According to the minister, a strategic partner should support the Croatian tourism industry but also ensure year-long operations and invest in the carrier's fleet.

Croatia Airlines completed a four year restructuring program on January 1, which has seen the company return to profitability. It is believed it recorded a small profit for a second consecutive year in 2015, although its results are yet to be made public. The previous government, which unsuccessfully attempted to sell the carrier once, selected the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the World Bank’s investment arm, to seek out potential investors by October 2015. At this point, it is unknown whether the IFC has come up with any prospective buyers. According to media reports last year, the IFC entered talks with Lufthansa, Turkish Airlines and Aegean Airlines over the possible acquisition of Croatia Airlines. Both Lufthansa and Turkish Airlines have denied such claims, while Aegean refused to comment. The current management, headed by Krešimir Kučko, is in favour of the airline being recapitalised, rather than being taken over by another carrier. Recapitalisation would entail changes to the airline’s capital. “The arrival of a strategic partner won’t generate much money for the state but will allow Croatia Airlines to develop at a quicker pace”, Mr Kučko noted.

Croatia Airlines will expand its operations this summer with the lease of regional aircraft and the development of its European network. “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. If we are to go at it alone, we will develop as well, but it will be at a somewhat slower pace", Mr Kučko previously said. Originally, the former government planned to decide on the carrier's privatisation model by this spring, following which an international tender would have been launched in order for interested parties to submit binding bids. As a result, the privatisation process would have been completed this summer.


  1. Anonymous09:05

    Let's not beat around the bush. If they had found someone interested they would have sold the airline by now.

    1. Anonymous09:08

      Wow, what a conclusion, they will do what LH tells them to do.

    2. Purger09:09


    3. Anonymous10:12

      Why? LH is not a shareholder of OU, they used to do their maintenance like 10 years ago. So what possible influence does LH have?

      And it has nothing to do with Star Alliance because by that logic, Air New Zealand, South African or Thai would have as much influence over Croatian as Lufty allegedly does.

      Please explain...

    4. Anonymous10:20

      Croatia Airlines CEO Misetic was for 15 years sitting on the board of directors of Lufthansa City Line while he was also OU CEO. I don't know if you would consider this a conflict of interest.

    5. Anonymous10:29

      Well he isn't CEO now so the question still stands.

    6. Anonymous10:31

      Oh come on. Since LH gave OU its first B737, it's business has been highly influenced by LH. The same way JP has been highly influenced by LH. That's why they are in Star Alliance. OU should have ventured into Eastern Europe around a decade ago. It didn't primarily because of LH. And if you are one of those people that will say "Eastern Europe is beneath us since we boarder the UK" don't.

      Anyway it's useless arguing with you. Following your posts on Mondays news you seem mostly interested in picking fights and unable to stand anyone's difference of opinion, especially if they don't say OU is amazing.

    7. Anonymous10:34

      And yeah. If Misetic was sitting on two chairs for fifteen years (and he pretty much established OU) then you can conclude how OU is heavily influenced by LH. It was based on those foundations.

    8. Anonymous10:42

      These are your opinions not facts.

      Are you saying that because LH gave Croatia ONE lousy plane they will do whatever Lufty says?

      If that was the case OU wouldn't have the largest aircraft maintenance facility in the region.

      And who is picking a fight?
      I am simply asking why?

    9. Anonymous10:48

      If you think one plane was all LH did for OU you are wrong. You obviously don't know a lot about OU or its history.

      PS The plane was not lousy at all.

    10. Anonymous11:16

      LH is jus tone of OU's problems, please read between the lines, lousy management, incompetent government(s), EU membership, restructuring process (being done, but, still wondering, not knowing what to do)...

    11. Anonymous11:25

      Sorry, "jus tone"="just one"

    12. Anonymous11:27

      Ok let's wait and see how things turn out now. The network expansion is a good start.

    13. Anonymous14:56

      - LH sold to OU old 737-200 - all 5 of them

      - All 6 Q400 is leased from LH company

      - A319/320 that was sell and leaseback was made this via LH

      - OU was "freely" transfer all cargo business to LH when it was profitable business

      - but when it was not profitable they gave cargo business back to OU

      - all support in FRA, MUC, ZRH, VIE and BRU is by LH (even selling ticket), there is no reciprocity in ZAG, SPU and DBV

      - all support and maintenance in other airport out of Croatia is made by LH

      - huge equipment purchase (like Recaro seats) was made by Lufthansa (and only than OU is in trend and make this "revolutionary" changes very fast)

      - LH logo is in so many things OU have (even stupid kit that you get when OU lost your begs is LH kit)

      - slots that OU use in FRA and MUC are LH slots

      - OU is member of LH Miles and more ff program

      ...soooo, your conclusion????

  2. Anonymous09:20

    Could a similar model that was used for Adria's sale be used for OU?

    1. Anonymous09:39

      I don't think so. Unlike Adria, Croatia Airlines doesn't need cash urgently. But if they don't find a partner and expand significantly this summer, I would not be surprised if they have a big loss at the end of the year.

    2. Anonymous09:40

      Speaking of expansion, are their new routes this summer from Zagreb going to be seasonal or year round?

    3. Anonymous09:45

      Well if they are expanding their fleet and those planes are staying with them during the winter, the logical conclusion would be that they will keep those flights year round. They can't just let the aircraft sit in Zagreb and wait out the winter.

    4. I'm wondering how much will that expansion bring to the bottom line. They are wet leasing those planes and short term. All of that is not cheap.

  3. Anonymous09:48

    When will OU announce its new routes officially? If Milan is starting at the start of May, wouldn't it be time for them to start selling tickets?

  4. Anonymous09:59

    "Croatia Airlines completed a four year restructuring program on January 1"

    So 42 days have elapsed since the end of the restructure, of which the last 2 produced a profit.

    There is obviously no reason to rush any privatization, as long as it keeps making money it becomes more valuable and any future sale would be easier, and more profitable.

    It's good to see that OU won't be sold in a fire sale like JU was.

    1. Anonymous17:04

      Just to state the facts .... JU wasn't sold in any fire sale.... it eventually got a strategic partner after 2 failed privatisation attempts over a 3 year period .... And even then, that strategic partner came about as a result of a broader govt-to-govt relationship between the UAE and the Republic of Serbia.... therefore, far from it being a fire sale

  5. Anonymous10:01

    They might want to fix their online check in before introducing any new routes. It hasn't been working properly for months.

    1. Anonymous10:04

      +1 yes please!!

    2. Anonymous11:29

      I think they are migrating to a new system. That's why on line checking hasn't been working on some routes. They should complete it soon.

    3. Anonymous13:26

      Migrating to a new .don't let me laugh �� it's more like we don't have money which system fits my pocket. Because a system that you really need have costs to it .And if he implement it then the Ceo won't be able to prove profits

    4. Anonymous17:06

      i wonder how many haters would have voiced up had this have been JU ....

    5. Anonymous17:22

      OU's webpage is a disaster, hasn't been changed for ages! I really like Air Serbia's website, but Adria Airways' looks more professional. Happy, Anonymous 5:06 PM?

  6. Anonymous12:09

    Po mom misljenu njih ce kupiti LH mozda ili niko drugi mozda ostanu jos par godina na padne cena pa ih mozda kupi neko drugi.

  7. Anonymous12:44

    Aegean je kupac 99% zasad. Sve će se znati i biti će objavljeno do polovice ožujka.

    1. Anonymous13:13

      Ima li jos nekih detalja?

    2. Anonymous14:57

      Napravljeno je par sastanaka i Aegean se pokazao kao najboljim, jednostavno su imali najbolju strategiju i viziju u vezi OU. Napokon se i tada shvatilo da bi ih LH i TK samo prozvakali i ispljunuli.

    3. Purger14:59

      Daj bože!!!!

    4. Anonymous15:58

      That would be fantastic news for OU!

    5. Anonymous15:58

      Bice kupljen samo flota prebacena u ATH drago ,mi je za zaposlene sto ce imate boljeg poslodavca od sad .

    6. Purger16:10

      Sinko, zašto bi flota bila prebačena u ATH? Koja bi to logika bila?

    7. Danijel16:30

      Koja bi uopce bila vrijednost OU? Bilo se spominjalo 30 milijuna eura, sto mi je nekako malo. Normalno, opet je pitanje dal je u pitanju kupnja cijelog udjela ili dijela.

    8. Anonymous17:20

      Iskreno, ne vjerujem da postoji ozbiljan kupac za OU u ovom trenutku. Zašto bi Vlada izjavljivala da se OU neće privatizirati dok se stanje ne popravi, maloprije sam čuo da će se ovih dana odlučivati o novim direktorima javnih poduzeća. Bilo bi super da ih Aegean kupi, a vidjet ćemo, što se duže čeka, to gore za OU.

    9. Anonymous18:03

      Zar vi mislite da ce stvarno A3 ulagati pare tolike u CTN da naprave Hub sistem ?

    10. Anonymous18:51

      This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    11. Anonymous18:58

      Anon @ 6.51pm ... do you hand on heart think that your reply is one that a decent human being should make ? You need to go and seek out some ultra-right wing website to post such slanderous comments, rather than post these on an aviation enthusiasts website, no matter how irritating INN-NS's comments are

    12. Anonymous19:11

      Ja ne provociram ali takvo je trenutno stanje i da su uzeli JU nebi bilo nista od toga .
      Drago mi za zaposlene ali ocigledno su ovde neki samo radi Politike.

    13. Purger01:47

      Sinko dragi ako je netko kupio Air Serbiu koja je bila totalna ruina od kompanije sa prastarim avionima, dugovima, katastrofalnim imageaom, u državi koja baš i nija u vrhu Europe, bez turizma... onda stvarno nije problem prodati Croatiu. Samo je pitanje što vlada od toga želi. Novac, određene obveze za kupca, investiranje, ili se samo želi riješiti vručeg krumpira (kao u slučaju Adrije), ili pak želi sama dodatno investirati (kao u slučaju Srbije) i razvijati zračni promet.

      Prodaju se Marko zračne kompanije, prodaju. Eto u zadnje vrijeme u Europi je prodan TAP, blue1, Aer Lingus, bmi, CityJet, Vueling, Aer Arann (Sobartair), Blue Air, Olympic Air... o ovima izvan Europe da i ne govorim. Namjerno nisam spominjao kompanije koje je kupio u Europi Etihad.

    14. Anonymous01:51

      Ja nisam rekao da je ne moguce naci kupca nego da A3 nema sigurno nameru praviti Hub u ZAG nista drugo nisam rekao.

  8. Anonymous13:23

    Any news about new Ceo.
    As the one they have now is from previous Government and he was always in favour of previous Government. He has proven that he has no knowledge of the airline business at Ceo level.
    And his pockets are full already.
    Curious how he is slowly changing his way of talking about the plans . He is Ceo with No business plan .

  9. Purger15:11

    Trade Air od lipnja (juna) nabavlja Jetstream 32 (19 sjedala) i drugačija koncipira red letenja, te otvara i mogućnost konrektiranih linija.

    Stara linija:

    Nove linije:

    Moje informacije su da će linije ići 2 puta tjedno, a ZAG i dalje 5 puta tjedno. No, sve bi trebalo ići cijele godine, a ne samo sezonski. PSO traje do 2020.

    Čim dođem do Marka Cvijina napišem više.

    Uzgled Trade air radi dobar dio charter rotacija za promociju Mercedesa u Dubrovniku. Posao traje do ožujka.

    A320 koji su kupili od SATA-e je star 17 godina i dolazi u svibnju (maj). Piloti Trade aira su već obaviti type rating na simulatoru u Beču, među njima i sam Marko Cvijin.

    To znači da će Trade Air u lipnju imati flotu od 4 aviona (2 Fokkera 100, te po jednog A320 i Jetstream 32).

    1. Anonymous15:39

      Odmah neka udare liniju zimi ZAG-DBV uz normalne cijene Fokker će biti krcat stalno.

    2. Purger16:08

      Zašto? Konkurirati Croatiji? To ne bi imalo nikakvog smisla. Ima toliko linija koje bi mogli letjeti u code-share sa Croatiom i mislim da i njihova politika treba ići u tom smjeru i Croatia bi trebala prihvatiti takvu suradnju. A onda Fokkeri mogu letjeti i za OTP, SOF, HEL, OSL, ARN, DUS, DUB... Naravno uz konekcije na OU letove za PUY, ZAD, SPU, BWK, SJJ, PRN, SKP i vlastite za OSI.

    3. Jetstream 31 is a peculiar choice.

      It is strange that there isn't more domestic service in Croatia. Even with motorways, flying would be a good choice on many routes.

  10. Anonymous17:10

    I'm surprised that there are no headlines from the Croatian media blaming Air Serbia for "stealing" Etihad from OU as a strategic partner .... JU seems to be the reason for all of OU's ills, including the fact that they also "stole" New York from them ....

    1. Anonymous18:35

      That is probably because you overestimate perception of JU or EY deal in Croatia. Not many people really care about it nor see or think of JU of cause of OU headaches.
      Including JU JFK service. I mean, good luck with that, but that is hardly show stopper for Croatia considering abundance of one stop options from many airports and type of traffic. It is hard to believe that they will hurt Croatian market. Of course there will be some sales probably stimulated by dirt cheap fares, but I don't really expect any noticable impact on both outgoing or incoming market. That is 5 weekly service with detour from realisticallyy unknown brand from both sides of the ocean that will cover only JFK as 1 stop and fight the likes of LH, KL, BA, AF. Not the same as the impact it will have for Serbia or Macedonia/Bosnia that have much more limited options.

    2. Anonymous18:38

      In a sense that Serbia itself will have non stop service and then 1 stop to the rest of the states (for Croatia then you have 2 stops - not competitive for LAX, SFO, ORD, IAD, YYZ...) and Macedonia and Bosnia anyway dont enjoy too many options at present, so more chances for JU

    3. Anonymous18:51

      @6.35pm .... i don't really care one way or the other ... Your media however, as well as your Ambassador in the US, are the ones who have made a big hoo-ha about JU's initiatives ... They don't seem to have underestimated what JU are doing and are making claims around JU stealing NY services from OU and Zagreb. These are reports coming from YOUR side of the fence, not this side.

    4. Anonymous18:55

      Well, you obviously do care since you post the question, haha...and maybe you follow that media much more than people in Croatia do as there is actually not much if any coverage of that really.
      Cheers! :)

    5. Anonymous19:06

      If no one takes notice of what your media reports - then it is good to know that you have reasonably well educated people that can make their own mind up about these matters. HOWEVER, when the representative of your govt in the US makes an issue of this, then that is him speaking on behalf of the govt of Croatia and the Croatian people - which i'm sure you will agree, puts a whole different context on this issue. Therefore, the Croatian govt hasn't underestimated what JU is doing in this part of the world and the impact it is having on OU

    6. Anonymous00:18


      No, actually, JU will have an impact on Croatian market, it is already making an impact, by bringing new tourists to Croatian coast and offering (somewhat) competitive fares (to certain destinations) to Croatian travellers. So, I would say that this is very positive for Croatian tourism industry, as well as travellers. They should welcome JU, and I believe the airports and regions where JU flies do just that.

      Also, OU is not really in any jeopardy, as foreign carriers are traditionally the ones who ferry in tourists to the coast. OU has a stronghold in ZAG, primarily to Western European destinations.

      But, maybe, OU's potential to build its own major hub and become more than a small airline has been diminished. However, the whole region has got a long way to go. Average disposable income is so low accross the Balkans, so there are many potential pax in the future if something changes...

    7. Anonymous01:54

      OU have 60% majority in ZAG, more than 40% in SPU where it is far the biggest company, they have biggest share in DBV, ZAD and PUY. So, how can you say that foreign carriers are traditionally the ones who ferry tourist to the coast?

    8. Anonymous18:32

      40% is less than 60%. Plus, any domestic routes are excusively OU, more or less, which means the ratio when it comes to foreign pax is even more than 60/40. So, yes, proved my point.

  11. SKP 01.2016 - 109.097 +23,58%

    1. Anonymous15:40

      Bravo Skopie!
      Pozdrav ot Sofia


Post a Comment

EX-YU Aviation News does not tolerate insults, excessive swearing, racist, homophobic or any other chauvinist remarks or provocative posts with the intention of creating further arguments. A full list of comment guidelines can be found here. Thank you for your cooperation.