Rumors are swirling about an imminent sale of BAe 146 operator Ansett New Zealand. The airline has been thought to be up for sale for some time, and went through a punishing strike in the fall in an effort to drive down costs so to make itself more attractive to potential buyers. It has since reduced its pilot workforce, and disposed of two of its BAe 146s. One rumor pointed to QANTAS as the buyer, with the Australian Financial Review reporting that QANTAS was to transfer six Boeing 737s to Ansett NZ. The Australian airline denied the reports. More recent rumors point to a consortium of New Zealand investors as the buyer. It is widely expected that any buyer would seek to reach a partnership with QANTAS and rename Ansett NZ to reduce the impact of the ill-will generated by the strike.