December 10, 2007 / 12:52 PM / 12 years ago

Intesa CEO attacks French purchase of Alitalia

(Corrects spelling of “reporters” in second paragraph)

FLORENCE, Italy, Dec 10 (Reuters) - Selling loss-making Italian carrier Alitalia AZPIa.MI to Air France-KLM (AIRF.PA) would be like discarding it, Corrado Passera, chief executive of rival bid partner Intesa Sanpaolo (ISP.MI), said on Monday.

“Air France’s bid would make Alitalia a unit within a rival group,” Passera told reporters on the sideline of an event.

“It would be like giving up, like saying: we have mismanaged it for many years and now let’s throw it away.”

Bank Intesa Sanpaolo has joined small Italian airline Air One in a bid for Alitalia, the only serious challenger to Air France-KLM’s offer. (Reporting by Silvia Ognibene)

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