More money, more guarantees on governance and on Ita plans. These are, in essence, the requests put on paper by the government in the letter sent to the consortium competing to take over control of the national airline born from the ashes of Alitalia. For the Lufthansa-MSC tandem and the Certares fund (with the support of Delta and AirFrance-KLM) there is also an additional time: the new offers must not be presented within the 10 days announced by Prime Minister Mario Draghi while illustrating the new dl Aid, but there will be time until midnight on 22 August. At that point, the Ministry of Economy should take seven days, at most ten, to give a definitive answer before the end of the month. With the aim of not transforming the future of Ita and its employees into an electoral match in view of the vote on 25 September.
To the additional requests from the Mef, the two competing consortiums did not react by getting back to work to file their offers as much as possible.
The thorniest issue, probably, is that relating to economic requests: at the beginning of January, MSC-Lufthansa valued the Italian company 1.3 billion euros, but in May after the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the energy crisis, the two giants valued Ita one billion against 800 million of Certares; on July 5, however, they offered around 850 million euros, against a figure of around 700 million from the American fund.
Now the Treasury would like more money, but the more time passes, the lower the value of Ita. Also because with the end of the summer season, cash flows will drop and liquidity problems will begin. And for the same reason, it is unlikely that the government will get an answer to the question of how much the winner of the tender will pay the Mef when he decides to leave the shareholding structure: there are too many uncertainties still looming over the future of the carrier.
The issue of governance is also complex. The Ministry of Economy would like more than the 20% offered by MSC-Lufthansa; Certares is willing to reach 40% with two out of 5 members on the board of directors and the appointment of the president in addition to the right of veto on some issues. MSC-Lufthansa evaluate the requests of the Mef, but would not like to be bound in their strategies by the government. In short, it is difficult for the Treasury to have the last word on all the crucial decisions for the future of the company, including alliances, network and management. On something, the executive will have to yield. To the highest bidder.