Apollo, Greybull, LOT to bid for Thomas Cook airline Condor: source

FILE PHOTO: Passenger jets operated by Condor, a Thomas Cook subsidiary, are seen on the runway at Hurghada International Airport, Egypt January 6, 2020. Picture taken January 6, 2020. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Condor, the airline that used to belong to Thomas Cook, has attracted interest from buyout groups Apollo APO.N and Greybull as well as Polish carrier LOT, which are expected to submit final bids next week, a person close to the matter said.

Each of the bidders could tie up with some of Germany’s leading tour operators in a potential deal to buy Condor, the person said on Thursday.

Condor and Apollo declined to comment, while Greybull and LOT were not immediately available for comment.

As part of efforts to cut costs, Condor on Thursday struck a deal with its flight attendants on plans to cut 150 of its 2,400 cabin jobs. That followed an earlier deal to cut 170 jobs in overhead operations.

“This is an important step towards securing Condor’s future,” the airline said in a statement.

Cost cut targets considered necessary for a sale have been reached, the person close to the matter said.

Unlike Thomas Cook, Condor received a lifeline from Germany in the form of a 380 million euro bridging loan and filed for investor protection proceedings, which requires that a company is not yet insolvent and can be saved.

German weekly Der Spiegel earlier reported the interest of the prospective buyers.

Reporting by Ilona Wissenbach; Writing by Arno Schuetze; editing by David Evans