Russian billionaire Blavatnik said interested in Air Berlin

AFP
AFP - [email protected] • 7 Apr, 2008 Updated Mon 7 Apr 2008 11:02 CEST
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Russian billionaire Leonard Blavatnik wants to invest in the German low-cost airline Air Berlin, airline boss Joachim Hunold told the Berlin daily Der Tagesspiegel in comments published on Monday.

"He is without doubt a prestigious investor, who is clearly interested in a long-term commitment," said Hunold, who is head of the second biggest German airline.

After meeting twice with Blavatnik, the Air Berlin boss said: "I came away with a very positive impression."

On Friday, Air Berlin said that the Vatas investment fund, owned by South African businessman Robert Hersov, had sold its 18.56 percent stake in Air Berlin on April 1. The airline had spoken of interest by an institutional investor, but did not identify one. It is apparently Access Industries, a fund owned by the Russian billionaire.

Blavatnik made his fortune in oil, and now lives in Britain, where he holds one of the biggest fortunes in the country.

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AFP 2008/04/07 11:02

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