Alitalia's Chief Executive Officer Cramer Ball today presented to the airline’s trade unions and staff the details of the 2017-2021 business plan approved by the company's board of directors on Wednesday 15 March.
The plan identifies a series of actions to boost revenues and reduce costs in order to achieve profitability by 2019.
Alitalia will reduce costs by €1 billion by 2019 and the majority of savings – two-thirds – will come from non-labour related costs while one third will be related to labour and productivity.
Achieving profitability by 2019 means Alitalia can implement positive growth that includes six new long-haul aircraft joining the fleet between 2019 and 2021. This is in addition to two aircraft joining in 2017 and 2018. The airline is also planning to launch ten new long-haul routes between 2019 and 2021 and to recruit up to 500 new crew members by 2019.
The business plan contains important measures related to labour costs, including a headcount reduction and a new Collective National Labour agreement to make Alitalia’s cost base more competitive.
Headcount will reduce by up to 2,000 permanent and temporary roles in the business, which is a 50 per cent reduction in office staff and a 20 per cent reduction in non-flying operational roles.
The airline currently employs 12,500 people around the world.
Cramer Ball said: “Headcount reductions are a painful but necessary action that, alongside other cost reductions, will stabilise our financial situation and create long-term sustainability. These changes are essential if we are to compete effectively in the extremely tough European aviation market. Together with trade unions, and with the support of the Italian government, we will work respectfully and fairly at ways in which to minimise the impact of the business plan on our people.”