Air Berlin (AB, Berlin Tegel) has confirmed it has reached an agreement with Lufthansa Group in which the latter will acquire the former's LGW - Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter (HE, Dortmund) and Niki (HG, Vienna) units in addition to twenty other aircraft.

The bankrupt carrier said in a statement on Thursday, October 12, that its Supervisory Board had approved Lufthansa's proposal following extended talks between the two parties. In tandem to the aircraft purchase, the agreement will also preserve jobs at Niki and LGW.

"We are delighted that we have found a strong partner in the Lufthansa Group," Air Berlin's Chief Restructuring Officer, Frank Kebekus, said. "All the more so as we have reached an agreement on the purchase of a significant part of the Air Berlin company in such a short time. We are confident that several thousand Air Berlin employees will now find a new home with the Lufthansa Group. It is now about negotiating the contracts with other bidders as well."

Earlier in the day, Lufthansa Chief Executive Officer Carsten Spohr told a press gathering that his airline would add up to 81 of Air Berlin's 144 aircraft and take on 3,000 of its 8,500 staff. According to the Rheinische Post, Lufthansa will spend EUR1.5 billion (USD1.8 billion) in the takeover process.

The transaction, which is valued at around EUR210 million euros (USD248.72 million), is still subject to creditor as well as German and European Union regulatory approvals.

Air Berlin added that talks with easyJet (U2, London Luton) are still ongoing.