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GRUPO MARSANS was a private Spanish consortium mainly dedicated to tour operations . It had operations in Spain, France, Italy, Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela, and Argentina, as well as representations in Latin America . Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
was a subsidiary of Autobuses Urbanos del Sur, S.A. It was based in Madrid, Spain .

The consortium was the parent company of Air Comet
Air Comet
and charter airline AirPlus, and participated, along with SAS , in the Spanair
Spanair
's owner holding.

CONTENTS

* 1 History

* 1.1 Financial difficulties and downfall

* 2 Subsidiaries

* 2.1 Aerolíneas Argentinas
Aerolíneas Argentinas
* 2.2 AeBal- Spanair
Spanair
Link * 2.3 Aerolíneas del Sur * 2.4 Air Comet
Air Comet
* 2.5 Spanair
Spanair

* 3 References * 4 External links

HISTORY

The company was founded in 1910 by Rafael Almeida and Armando Marsans, from whom it took the name. Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
was privatised in 1985, when it was acquired by the Trapsa holding, headed by Gonzalo Pascual and Gerardo Díaz Ferrán ; it had previously been part of the Spanish consortium INI .

In late 2006, the group placed an order with Airbus
Airbus
for 12 Airbus A330-200s plus ten options, in a deal worth US$ 2 billion, concluding a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed earlier that year, during the Farnborough Airshow
Farnborough Airshow
; the first of these aircraft that had been taken delivery of, in August 2008 (2008-08), was incorporated into the Air Comet
Air Comet
's fleet. Another MoU was signed with Airbus
Airbus
in October 2007 (2007-10), this time for the purchase of 61 more aircraft, and in November that year, Marsans boosted the A330-200
A330-200
commitment by placing a firm order for five more of these aircraft, plus 12 Airbus A319s , 25 Airbus
Airbus
A320s , five Airbus
Airbus
A321s , ten Airbus
Airbus
A350-900s and four Airbus
Airbus
A380s . In December the same year, Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
bidded for a small stake in Spanair
Spanair
, then owned by the SAS Group
SAS Group
, but withdrew its interest in February 2008 (2008-02) arguing that SAS made the bidding public.

FINANCIAL DIFFICULTIES AND DOWNFALL

According to Spanish newspaper ABC , the downfall of Grupo Marsans was precipitated by mounting financial difficulties arising from the inability of the management to properly handle the airlines that had been gradually incorporated, which eventually led to a € 320 million debt the group was unable to afford. In April 2010 (2010-04), the Marsans' license for selling air tickets was revoked by the International Air Transport Association
International Air Transport Association
; this occurred the same day a Spanish court declared the insolvency of Air Comet
Air Comet
, an airline controlled by the group. In June that year, Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
was sold to Posibilitum Business for US$720 million (€600 million), with approximately half this amount being debts.

SUBSIDIARIES

AEROLíNEAS ARGENTINAS

An Aerolíneas Argentinas
Aerolíneas Argentinas
Boeing 747-400
Boeing 747-400
arrives at Barajas Airport in 2009. Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
bought into the carrier in 2001; in 2008, the government of Argentina expropriated the airline.

In October 2001 (2001-10), 92% of Aerolíneas Argentinas
Aerolíneas Argentinas
was assigned to Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
by the SEPI , which had controlled the Argentine carrier since February 2000 (2000-02), with the group committing to acknowledge half the debt of the airline at that time, around US$615 million, and to inject another US$50 million. Along with its domestic subsidiary Austral Líneas Aéreas
Austral Líneas Aéreas
, Aerolíneas Argentinas was owned by Marsans until both carriers were renationalised in late 2008. In July that year, Marsans agreed to sell the airline back to the Argentine government
Argentine government
; a contract was signed to look for a third-party to evaluate the price of the transaction, should the parties involved not come to an agreement, but the government took over the airline after negotiations with Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
broke down over the difference for that price ( Credit Suisse
Credit Suisse
valued the company at US$450 million for Marsans, whereas an Argentine court said the airline was worth −US$600 million) and allegations of mismanagement. According to MercoPress
MercoPress
, Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
began a steady decline in 2008, when control of the airline was taken over by the Argentine government.

AEBAL-SPANAIR LINK

AeBal
AeBal
, AEROLíNEAS DE BALEARES was established in 1999 and started operations on 5 July 2000 from Madrid
Madrid
with domestic services and an initial fleet of three Boeing 717
Boeing 717
aircraft. It was originally named Aerolíneas Baleares Blue Star, but has operated under the AeBal- Spanair
Spanair
Link name, whilst retaining much of its Spanair
Spanair
pedigree in the livery. It was owned by Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
(51%), SAS Group
SAS Group
(25%), Spanair
Spanair
(18%) and VITRAC (6%) and had 155 employees (at March 2007). A number of changes in the shareholding structure of the company ended up with SAS Group
SAS Group
owning 100% of the company.

AEROLíNEAS DEL SUR

THIS SECTION NEEDS EXPANSION. You can help by adding to it . (March 2013)

This was a Chile
Chile
-based airline that commenced operations in December 2005 (2005-12). Aerolíneas del Sur was later rebranded as Air Comet Chile, and served several destinations within the country, including Antofagasta
Antofagasta
, Calama , Concepción , Iquique
Iquique
, Punta Arenas
Punta Arenas
, Puerto Montt and Santiago
Santiago
.

AIR COMET

Marsans received the first A330-200
A330-200
on behalf of Air Comet
Air Comet
in 2008; this subsidiary folded in late 2009, precipitating the group's downfall.

The airline was created in 1996, and served primarily Latin American destinations, including Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
, Havana
Havana
, Guayaquil
Guayaquil
, Lima
Lima
and Quito
Quito
. In December 2009 (2009-12), all flights were suspended following the ruling of a London
London
court that ordered the impoundment of the carrier 's 13-strong fleet. The decision was made over a US$24.4 million debt with HSH Nordbank
HSH Nordbank
for the lease of aircraft, some of them property of an Irish firm. The airline had its operator\'s certificate cancelled by the Spanish Development Ministry a day after operations were disrupted. At the time of closure, the company owed its employees some € 7 million in wages, and they had not been paid for six months.

SPANAIR

THIS SECTION NEEDS EXPANSION. You can help by adding to it . (March 2013)

Baleares -based Spanair
Spanair
was founded in December 1986 (1986-12) by SAS and Teinver, a holding owned by Gonzalo Pascual and Gerado Díaz Ferrán. It started operations as a charter carrier in 1988 (1988); scheduled services within Spain commenced in February 1994 (1994-02), and intercontinental flights were launched in 1997. Teinver, which was in turn owned by Marsans, held a 51% controlling stake in the airline until 2001, when SAS boosted its participation in the carrier to 75%.

REFERENCES

* ^ "Company Overview of Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
S.A.". Bloomberg Businessweek . Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ A B C Knibb, David (1 November 2001). "Aerolineas plans fresh start as Marsans steps in". Seattle
Seattle
: Flightglobal
Flightglobal
. Airline Business . Archived from the original on 25 August 2012. * ^ A B C D "Marsans, un grupo que quiso volar y al que las alas le costaron su futuro" (in Spanish). ABC . 10 June 2010. Archived from the original on 9 March 2013. * ^ Karp, Aaron (9 January 2007). " Airbus
Airbus
off to fast start in \'07, inks Grupo Marsans, AirAsia orders". Air Transport World . Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ "Farnborough Report". Air Transport World . 1 September 2006. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ A B "Other News - 08/28/2008". Air Transport World . 29 August 2008. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ Kirby, Mary (12 October 2007). " Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
orders 61 Airbus aircraft, including A350s, A380s". Philadelphia
Philadelphia
: Flightglobal
Flightglobal
. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ A B C D E Buyck, Cathy (23 December 2009). " Air Comet
Air Comet
shuts down". Air Transport World . Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ Kaminski-Morrow, David (7 November 2008). "Marsans firms order for 61 Airbuses including four A380s and 10 A350s". London
London
: Flightglobal
Flightglobal
. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ "Other News - 12/19/2007". Air Transport World . 20 December 2007. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ " Grupo Marsans
Grupo Marsans
out, Iberia in for Spanair". Air Transport World . 15 February 2008. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ "O grupo Marsans continúa vendendo billetes por un acordo con outras compañías" (in Galician). El Progreso . EFE
EFE
. 21 April 2010. Archived from the original on 16 March 2013. * ^ "Méndez: "Un golpe muy serio a la imagen del sector turístico"". ABC . 21 April 2010. Archived from the original on 15 March 2013. * ^ "Las aerolíneas retiran a Marsans la licencia para vender billetes de avión". El Mundo . 21 April 2010. Archived from the original on 15 March 2013. * ^ Ontoso, Luis M. (21 April 2010). "Las aerolíneas retiran a Viajes Marsans la licencia para vender billetes de avión". ABC . Archived from the original on 22 March 2013. * ^ "Marsans negociará un ERE para despedir a más de mil empleados". Madrid
Madrid
: El País
El País
. 18 June 2010. Archived from the original on 23 March 2013. * ^ A B C "Spanish group Viajes Marsans (former owners of Aerolineas Argentinas) sold". MercoPress
MercoPress
. 11 June 2010. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ "El grupo Marsans, con nuevo dueño" (in Spanish). Madrid
Madrid
: La Nación . EFE
EFE
. 11 June 2010. Archived from the original on 9 March 2013. * ^ "De la Rúa se reunió con los nuevos dueños de Aerolíneas". La Nación
La Nación
. EFE
EFE
. 11 October 2001. Archived from the original on 12 March 2013. * ^ Olivera, Francisco (3 October 2001). "Aerolíneas fue adjudicada a otro consorcio español" (in Spanish). La Nación
La Nación
. Archived from the original on 12 March 2013. * ^ Schweimler, Daniel (22 June 2008). "Argentina renationalises airline". Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
: BBC News
BBC News
. Archived from the original on 25 August 2012. * ^ Plummer, Robert (22 July 2008). "Argentine airline set for bumpy ride". BBC News
BBC News
. Archived from the original on 24 April 2012. * ^ Neumann, Jeannette (17 December 2008). "Argentine Senate approves takeover of Aerolineas Argentinas". USA Today
USA Today
. Associated Press . Archived from the original on 12 March 2013. * ^ "Other News - 12/04/2008". Air Transport World . 5 December 2008. Archived from the original on 25 August 2012. * ^ Bergman, Lucas (17 December 2008). "UPDATE 2-Argentine Congress backs airline expropriation". Reuters
Reuters
. Archived from the original on 12 March 2013. * ^ "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International . 2007-03-27. p. 48. * ^ " Chile
Chile
approves Aerolineas offshoot". Flightglobal
Flightglobal
. Airline Business . 1 January 2005. Archived from the original on 11 March 2013. * ^ "Ready to take off, but no clearance yet". MercoPress
MercoPress
. 27 October 2004. Archived from the original on 16 March 2013. * ^ " Air Comet
Air Comet
becomes Chile\'s second largest domestic carrier". MercoPress
MercoPress
. 18 October 2007. Archived from the original on 16 March 2013. * ^ A B C D Mars, Amanda (23 December 2009). "El fiasco de Air Comet deja colgados a 640 empleados y miles de viajeros". Madrid
Madrid
: El País . Archived from the original on 9 March 2013. * ^ A B Mars, A. (22 December 2009). " Air Comet
Air Comet
prepara el concurso de acreedores y el despido de la plantilla" (in Spanish). Madrid
Madrid
: El País . Archived from the original on 9 March 2013. * ^ "Spanish airline Air Comet
Air Comet
is grounded, thousands stranded". USA Today
USA Today
. Associated Press
Associated Press
. 22 December 2009. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. * ^ "Spanair, crónica de una desaparición anunciada". El Mundo . 30 January 2012. Archived from the original on 11 March 2013. * ^ A B " Spanair
Spanair
deja de volar tras 25 años de historia". ABC . 27 January 2012. Archived from the original on 11 March 2013. * ^ " Spanair
Spanair
una compañía con 25 años de historia". Barcelona
Barcelona
: La Razón . 27 January 2012. Archived from the original on 11 March 2013. * ^ "SAS takes total control of Spanair
Spanair
ahead of divestment". London
London
: Flightglobal
Flightglobal
. 26 June 2007. Archived from the original on 15 June 2015. * ^ "SAS to Acquire Majority Ownership in Spanair" (PDF) (Press release). SAS Group