EasyJet yesterday confirmed a €40 million deal to acquire part of bankrupt Air Berlin operations at Berlin Tegel airport.

The acquisition will result in the UK low-fares carrier entering into leases for up to 25 Airbus A320s, offering employment to Air Berlin flying crews and taking over other assets including slots.

A recruitment campaign has been started to attract around 1,000 Air Berlin pilots and cabin crew over the coming months and will then be trained on easyJet’s safety and operating procedures.

They will be employed on local, German contracts under collective labour agreements negotiated.

The agreement “is consistent with easyJet’s strategy of purposeful investment in strong number one positions in Europe’s leading airports or number two to a legacy incumbent,” the airline said.

“This will enable easyJet to operate the leading short haul network at Tegel connecting passengers to and from destinations across Germany and the rest of Europe.

“This is in addition to easyJet’s existing base at Berlin Schönefeld and would mean that easyJet would be the leading airline in Berlin.”

Announcements on the new routes and services to be flown to and from Tegel will be made in due course.

A reduced timetable at Tegel will operate the winter season but the airline plans to operate a full schedule from summer 2018.

“EasyJet looks forward to building on the strong, customer focussed platform it already has in Berlin to fly more passengers, employ more people and support more economic growth in both Berlin and Brandenburg,” the airline said.

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