Nice Airport : threat on the second French air pole

Posté mer 24/01/2001 - 00:00
Par admin

The dismissal of Philippe Bruggisser at the head of SairGroup re-opens the whole question of Swissair's strategy and could lead to lay-offs for AOM, Air Liberté and Air Littoral.

Decided on Tuesday January 23rd, the departure of Philippe Bruggisser who was at the head of SairGroup (Swissair's holding) will be focusing the whole attention on the platform of Nice Côte d'Azur Airport. At the head of the holding since January 1997, it was him who lead Swissair's European expansion policy and particularly the creation of a new French pole with the buyout of Air Littoral, AOM and Air Liberté last year. This departure is even more worrying for the staff of the three French companies established in Nice that it re-opens the whole question of the strategy. The plan of merger of the three French air companies could even be suspended.Nevertheless, the formation of this new pole had begun. The name of the new company resulting from the merger of the three French companies should have been announced at the beginning of February. A first step had been passed on January 1st with the management agreement of Air Liberté by AOM. Within the year, the grouping of teams by geographic zones, the arrival of new planes for a finalization of the merger, with one single ticket before the end of 2001 were planned. It was a working plan that Swissair's president, Paul Reutlinger had developed, asserting that there would be no lay-offs (350 up to 400 retirements, early retirements or resignations out of 6000 jobs).It is a plan which is now going to be highly criticized. Quoted by the daily paper, 'La Tribune', (see article /"> 'L'incertitude s'accroît sur le pôle français'), Moritz Suter, the new director of SairGroup's air activities has said that 'to stop the losses in air activities as soon as possible, lay-offs have to be considered'. Those words obviously worried the staff of the three French air companies in complete restructuring.

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