Monday, April 15, 2013

Ducati CEO In Pole For Alitalia's Top Seat


Gabriele Del Torchio, chief executive of Italian motorcycle maker Ducati, is the front-runner to take the driver's seat at loss-making Alitalia, Italian newspapers reported on Saturday.
Alitalia's former chief executive Andrea Ragnetti quit after only a year in the job in February as the struggling airline reported a net loss of USD$367 million in 2012.
Alitalia, 25 percent owned by Air France-KLM, suffered last year from a drop in demand for air travel amid the euro zone debt crisis and recession in Italy. The Alitalia board is expected to name a new chief executive next week, Il Corriere della Sera said without citing their sources. Il Messaggero said the board could meet on April 18.
"This is an idea, I haven't signed anything yet," Del Torchio, known as a turnaround expert at Ducati, told Il Corriere della Sera.
Ducati was bought by Volkswagen's Audi division last year. Revenue rose 16 percent to EUR€606 million in 2012.
Alitalia was rescued from bankruptcy in 2008, when it was bought by a consortium made up of Italian companies including Intesa Sanpaolo, road operator Atlantia and IMMSI, which also controls scooter maker Piaggio.
Air France-KLM, which has held its stake in Alitalia since January 2009, has said it will probably wait until at least 2014 before using an option to take control of the airline.
(Reuters)
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