Azul Said to Be Looking to Buy Bankrupt LATAM Airlines' Brazil Operation

Brazilian airline Azul SA has approached Chile’s bankrupt LATAM Airlines Group with the aim of buying its Brazilian operation, Reuters reported. Azul’s shares rose more than 9% in Sao Paulo on the news, while LATAM’s shares in Santiago, where the airline is listed, were down 20%. LATAM filed for bankruptcy protection a year ago and, while it has secured new liquidity in that process, it has yet to present a formal restructuring plan. Azul, controlled by JetBlue Airways Corp founder David Neeleman, said in a securities filing on Monday that it was ready to lead a wave of consolidation in the Brazilian airline industry, which has been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic. On Wednesday, the newspaper Valor Economico also said that Azul was trying to lure LATAM and talking to its aircraft lessors. A LATAM spokeswoman said the airline had not received any offer from Azul, that talks were not in progress and that LATAM had no intention of selling any of its parts. Read more.