German leisure carrier Condor has started to remove the branding of its now defunct parent company Thomas Cook from its airplanes.
On Saturday, the airline showed pictures of one of its Boeing 767-300ER long-haul aircraft, registered as D-ABUF, with the ‘Sunny Heart’ – the logo used by Thomas Cook Group and most of its subsidiaries – removed, and replaced by the Condor symbol. The ‘Condor’ was the airline’s logo throughout its entire history – except for the past 16 years, when it painted the ‘Sunny Heart’ on its airplanes as its main logo. The classic symbol could only be seen in smaller versions, for example on the winglets or on certain objects inside the cabin.
The airline will replace the tail design on all other aircraft over the coming few weeks. ‘Nothing’ will change in the rest of the livery for now.
Condor, officially Condor Flugdienst GmbH was founded in 1955 with German flag-carrier Lufthansa being a shareholder from the beginning on. In 1959, the airline became a full subsidiary of the Lufthansa Group, which it would remain until 1997, when it was merged with Karstadt’s ‘C&N Touristik’, which later became the Thomas Cook Group. The ‘Condor’ was removed from the aircraft tails in 2002.
In September this year, the Thomas Cook Group entered liquidation and ceased all operations, after a fund that could have rescued the company was denied by the UK’s government. Two of its airlines, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia and Condor, managed to survive the shutdown, Condor even without any interruption to its flight operations. One day later, the German government and the German state of Hesse announced that Condor will receive a rescue loan of 380 million Euros (US $419 million), which was approved by the European Commission in October. The leisure airline also entered a shield procedure in order to protect itself from liabilities resulting from the parent company’s insolvency, and is now looking for a new investor for long-term stability.
Jakob Wert is an aviation journalist from Germany. He built up the website IFN.news and is the Editor-In-Chief of International Flight Network.