Reports in the Luxembourg media suggest that another five companies could be looking to take a 35 percent stake in Cargolux.
The new names are in addition to China’s HNA Group and Russian operator Volga-Dnepr Airlines, which were already known to have expressed interest in acquiring the stake in the all-cargo carrier that Qatar Airways relinquished in December following differences over strategic direction.
An online newspaper identified Nippon Cargo Airlines, Silk Way Airlines of Azerbaijan, Miami-based Centurion Air, private equity firm Saphir Capital Partners and, improbably, Belgian ferry operator Cobelfret as prospective candidates.
The Luxembourg government, which bought our Qatar Airways on an interim basis while a buyer was found, has not commented other than to say that it was not yet in formal negotiation with any party.
There may be clearer indications as to which potential buyers are serious once the Cargolux board has approved a new strategic plan on February 5 for the loss-making carrier.