Alitalia has made several attempts to find a private buyer, the Italian news agency ANSA reported. It was bought by a consortium of investors in 2008, including Air France, Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo and Piaggio Chairman Roberto Colaninno.
But the airline, previously owned by the Italian government, has continued to struggle and recently announced 700 jobs would be cut from its payroll.
When it was government-owned, it lost billions of euros.
Recent reports have said the railway, commonly referred to as FS, and Alitalia were negotiating about a possible deal, but Alitalia denied the stories, ANSA said.