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German airline Blue Wings in fresh financial woes

FRANKFURT, Jan 8 (Reuters) - German airline Blue Wings, part-owned by Russian billionaire Alexander Lebedev, is facing financial trouble less than a year after briefly losing its licence on concerns over its finances, a company spokesman said.

“We are just going from day-to-day to try and find a solution but our passengers do not need to worry,” he said on Friday.

Workers at Blue Wings, which flies from German cities including Duesseldorf to Kazakhstan, Lebanon and Russia, received only about half of their wages in November and have not been paid at all for December, he said, confirming earlier reports in German media.

Blue Wings, which also operates charter flights, carried a total of 1.1 million passengers and generated sales of 154 million euros ($220.5 million) in 2008.

Blue Wings last year briefly lost its licence on concerns that it did not have sufficient assets to be viable in the future. At that time, ex-KGB agent Lebedev offered his stake in the carrier to Russia's Aeroflot AFLT.MM for 1 euro.

Lebedev owns 48 percent of Blue Wings via Zurich-based investment company Alpstream. Cyprus-based Nondwell Investment Ltd and Chief Executive Joern Hellwig hold a further 26 percent of shares each. (Reporting by Angelika Gruber and Maria Sheahan; Editing by Sharon Lindores) ($1=.6983 Euro)

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