Air Berlin and Etihad Airways today unveiled an Airbus A320 in a new joint livery.
The aircraft was shown to the press at an event in Berlin hosted by Air Berlin CEO Wolfgang Prock-Schauer and Etihad president and CEO, and Air Berlin vice chairman, James Hogan.
Partners: Air Berlin boss Wolfgang Prock-Schauer (centre left) and Etihad CEO James Hogan (centre right) unveil the joint livery
Etihad has been buying into European aviation over the last year - it bought a 49 per cent stake in Air Serbia, formerly Jat Airways, in October (see news, September 20) and this year plans to acquire a one-third stake in Darwin, which it will rebrand as Etihad Regional (see news, November 17).
However, Hogan would not be drawn on whether the Gulf carrier will soon announce an investment in the struggling Alitalia.
Dismissing an italian newspaper report that claimed the deal is just two weeks away from being made public, he said: "There are no plans to make any announcement at the end of this month."
He added: "What is important in any transaction is that you undertake your due diligence and ensure if you are going to invest, there is a clear plan to move to profitability. We will not be rushed into making a decision."
Hogan added that there are no plans for Etihad to invest in either LOT Polish Airlines or Latvian carrier Air Baltic.