MILAN Top managers at Alitalia and Lufthansa (LHAG.DE) have not met to discuss the idea of the German airline buying a stake in the Italian flagship carrier, an Alitalia spokesman said on Tuesday.
"Alitalia managers did not meet with those from Lufthansa to talk about the German company entering (our) capital," the spokesman said.
On Tuesday Italian daily Il Messaggero said talks were under way between Alitalia CEO Cramer Ball and CFO Duncan Naysmith with Lufthansa managers.
The talks were aimed at finding a deal that could see Air Berlin being given to Lufthansa in exchange for the German carrier buying into Alitalia, the paper said.
United Arab Emirates airline Etihad owns 49 percent of Alitalia and 29.2 percent of Air Berlin.
(Reporting by Alberto Sisto, writing by Stephen Jewkes)