Italy’s state-controlled airline Alitalia, in which the government holds a 53% stake, is poised to enter into a strategic alliance with Air France.

The duo will forge an immediate code-sharing agreement, with Alitalia also joining the Skyteam network of which Air France is a leading member along with Delta Airlines, Air Mexico and Korean Airlines.

Joint Air France/Alitalia marketing initiatives are expected to follow the signing, as is an exchange of stock next year after both parties have evaluated the deal.

With today’s announcement, the global airline industry more than ever resembles a dating agency, Alitalia finally losing its ‘wallflower’ status after failed romances with a number of European airlines, most notably last year with KLM.

News source: Financial Times