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British Airways and Iberia agree to merge

17 November 2009

British Airways Plc agreed to a $7 billion merger with Spanish carrier Iberia Lineas Aereas de Espana SA, ending more than a year of talks on a tie-up aimed at fighting a slump in travel and closing the gap with competitors.

Under the all-share deal, British Airways investors will own about 55 per cent of the business, to be led by Willie Walsh, the UK carrier’s chief executive.

British Airways needs a bigger network to compete with larger rivals Air France-KLM Group and Deutsche Lufthansa AG. The combination will meld the UK company’s web of US routes with Iberia’s Latin America services, extending its leading position in the lucrative trans-Atlantic market and consolidating its status as Europe’s third-largest airline.

source: business-standard.com

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