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'Siberia?! Hardly a holiday destination!'

Speculation rises on likely bidders for the government's 25.5% stake in Siberia Airlines

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29 March 2013


S7 and other planes serviced at 'Sibir Tekhnik' hangar in Novosibirsk airport. Picture: G.Osokin, Russian AviaPhoto team, via

Now Alfa Bank has announced bids with a starting price of $35.6 million will be accepted until 18 April for the government's 25.5 per cent holding. 

At present, S7 Group holds 71.34% of Siberia Airlines. In turn, S7 Group is controlled by husband and wife Vladislav Filyov and Natalya Filyova, who will be bidders, according to a report in The Moscow Times. 

'They're interested, but it would be premature to forecast how far we will get with the auction', a source close to the company was quoted as saying by Vedomosti newspaper.

Mr Filyov once memorably said: 'Aviation is a beautiful 'sexy business'. Then he added: 'If you want to earn a lot, buy McDonalds shares.'

Kommersant newspaper predicted other bidders by auction day on 25 April could be other members of the oneworld global airline alliance, such as British Airways, and a number of Middle Eastern airlines.

S7 Vladislav Filyov

S7 Group is controlled by husband and wife Vladislav Filyov and Natalya Filyova. Pictured: Vladislav Filyov, 50, via

The paper also speculated on interest from rival Siberian airline UTair and also Transaero, as well as 'discount airlines willing to enter the Russian market'.

'Preliminary talks with a number of airlines have already begun', said Kommersant.

It also predicted interest from 'international or Russian financial investors'.

Kommersant said the British Airways did not respond to its call on the stake which the government has been seeking to sell since 2001.

'Airlines that are state-owned by more than 20 percent, or companies whose parent companies are state-owned by more than 20 percent, are not allowed to take part in the bid,' said the newspaper. 

The airline carried 8.2 million passengers in 2012, and is at number four in the Russian airline league table. Last year Siberia Airlines carried 6.3 million passengers and the S7 fleet comprises 51 aircraft. Its route network spans 83 destinations in 26 countries, including 41 domestic destinations.

The S7 Group also owns Globus Airlines, based at Domodedovo Airport in Moscow.  

Comments (2)

nice image of the planes inside the hangar - I thought at first it was toys)) on the story - it is good to see local brands thriving. thumbs up to the owners
Andrew, Beijing
30/03/2013 23:56
wonder who could it be from the international investors
Dave , US
30/03/2013 23:53

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