• Piaggio's Avanti Evo corporate transport twin turbo-prop. (Piaggio)
    Piaggio's Avanti Evo corporate transport twin turbo-prop. (Piaggio)

Administrators for Italian manufacturer Piaggio have shortlisted five potential buyers for the company, workers were told this week.

Piaggio, builder of the P.180 Avanti Evo twin turbo-prop, was placed in administration in November 2018, but has been kept afloat by a €196 million contract from the Italian defence force for nine new aircraft.

With the due diligence phase complete, Extraordinary Administrator Vincenzo Nicastro was able to inform the 940-strong workforce that five companies had emerged as potential new owners.

“Having five bidders on the shortlist is a very positive result,” Nicastro said, “particularly if we consider that the pandemic discouraged several overseas entities, especially those that most suffered from travel restrictions.

“I thought it useful at this stage to make the offers non-binding, in order to allow me to start all-round negotiations with those who will submit the best proposal in terms of the industrial plan, guarantees for the future and purchase price”.

Nicastro believes that a binding offer to buy the company will come within one month.

“I intend to start this last phase as soon as possible, immediately after we shall get a further authorisation requested by the Ministry, which I hope will soon be granted in order not to further slow down the sale process."

Piaggio is also believed to be close to signing new commercial contracts, which are expected to sweeten the deal for the successful bidder.

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