Air Europa founder Pepe Hidalgo in his darkest hour

The emergence of the pandemic has severely punished millions of entrepreneurs around the world belonging to a wide variety of industries. However, airlines have been hardest hit by mobility restrictions, a situation that has led to it Pepe HidalgoFounder of Air Europa and Globalia, not in the best of times.

“The truth is that I lived these two years as if several slabs of stone had fallen on me; The pandemic has affected the tourism sector (my group was designed vertically), commercial aviation, travel, etc… That is, all my businesses… Covid-19 has been quite unfair to me…” said Pepe Hidalgo in a recent interview.

The situation is complicated for the Spanish entrepreneur who is on the verge of the pandemic sold Air Europa to Iberia for 1,000 million, in an operation that ended in frustration after the arrival of Covid-19. Pepe Hidalgo’s economic crisis led to a sharp reduction in the price, up to 500 million, although it could be lowered even further.

All this in the midst of a difficult personal situation. Pepe Hidalgo would have to sell the airline considering at least 300 million euros that his personal debt for owning 50% of the company’s stock is $140 million.

Globalia, Pepe Hidalgo’s other gem, is also in a complicated situation

Javier Hidalgo is leaving Globalia, but not his entrepreneurial career

Adding to Air Europa’s frustrated sale is the complicated situation faced by Pepe Hidalgo’s other gem, Globalia. In this sense, the entrepreneur’s son, Javier Hidalgo, left the company last April after selling the various divisions to share the money with his brothers.

Pepe Hidalgo’s son inherited the tourism holding six years ago when it was worth around €3 billion with the sole aim of reversing it and sharing the profits with his two sisters. The reason for Javier Hidalgo’s mission is none other than the differences between him and his sisters Cristina and María José.

Before leaving the reins of the company, the father of three entrusted his son with the mission of selling all of Globalia’s subsidiaries, including Halcón Viajes, Air Europa and the Be Live hotel chain. to avoid greater evils in the familyin the style of the struggle for the legacy of El Corte Inglés.

Pepe Hidalgo’s entrepreneurial career

Pepe Hidalgo is one of the most recognized Spanish entrepreneurs for his career. Born in Villanueva del Conde in 1941, he is the son of a large family and began working at a young age to support the family economy.

At the age of 19 he emigrated to Switzerland and upon his return founded his first company dedicated to bus transport. In 1972 he launched Halcón Viajes, his first major business success, through which he transported Spanish emigrants to Zurich and other destinations. After the success of this adventure and in collaboration with a group of investors, In 1991, Pepe Hidalgo bought Air Europa.

some decades later, Pepe Hidalgo companies create 20,000 jobs, one of the main concerns of the entrepreneur in the complicated situation in which he finds himself. “I can’t stop thinking about the 20,000 families who have helped me and my management to create a group, the most important in Spain, with the only airline flying our country’s flag…” he affirms.

Despite the difficulties, Hidalgo is confident and with renewed vigour, aiming to keep his businesses “afloat and continue to grow as the storm of the health crisis subsides. We had already begun to recover. It all depends on whether we are able, whether the world is able to overcome this plague.”

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