PARIS: Air France, the State-controlled French airline, has
appointed Gavin Anderson to handle communications for its partial
privatisation later this year.
The French government had initially planned to float a 20 per cent stake
in the airline in June or July but it is thought that the most likely
date for the sale is now in September because of the current series of
air strikes in France.
An issue which may delay the flotation is negotiations with Air France
pilots for a 15 per cent pay cut in exchange for shares in the
Gavin Anderson will work jointly for the French government and for the
Air France company itself, which has just installed Jean-Cyril Spinetta
as its new chairman. The Air France team will be led from Gavin
Anderson’s Paris office by its French president and chief executive John
The French government is seeking to raise over pounds 300 million from
the offering to contribute toward planned investments in new aircraft
over the next five years. It is thought that after further distributions
of shares next year, the French government will be left with around 53
per cent of Air France, compared to the 95 per cent it currently owns.
French finance minister Dominique Strauss-Kahn has stated that there are
no plans to fully privatise the airline.
Air France made a profit of almost pounds 200 million last year but the
current industrial action is believed to have cost some pounds 30
- Gavin Anderson has been appointed by Luxembourg-based company SES,
which owns the Astra television satellites, to handle its PR ahead of a