Lufthansa Group has sealed a €9 billion German government bailout after one of its top shareholders dropped their opposition to the state intervention.
Ahead of Thursday’s extraordinary general meeting (25 June), Heinz Hermann Thiele – who owns a 15.5% stake in the carrier – told a German paper he would vote for the proposal, Reuters reports.
His support was enough to get the deal over the line, with the German airline group previously warning it would collapse into insolvency if the deal did not go ahead as planned.
The German government will take a 20% stake in the group, and assume a number of board seats. The group, parent to Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, SWISS and Eurowings, employs nearly 140,000 people.
It comes after the European Commission on Thursday (24 June) confirmed the bailout package did meet its state aid rules. Ryanair is understood to have threatened a legal challenge.
Lufthansa Group chief executive Carsten Spohr said the German government did not intend to become involved in airline operations.
The group is proposing to cut 22,000 jobs, despite the bailout, up from a forecast of just 10,000 in June. Consultation is under way.
It also plans to reduce its group fleet by around 100 aircraft.