IAG looks at three potential mergers20 September 2011
British Airways was late to the airline merger party when it finally combined with Spainâ€™s Iberia in January to form International Airlines Group, Europeâ€™s third-largest carrier by revenue.
First, Lufthansa, Europeâ€™s largest airline by sales, is considering selling BMI, its lossmaking UK subsidiary that has much sought after take-off and landing slots at Heathrow airport. Second, the Portuguese government is preparing to privatise TAP, or Transportes AÃ©reos Portugueses, the countryâ€™s flag-carrier. Third, there could be the chance to take over Aer Lingus, the Irish flag-carrier of which Mr Walsh was once chief executive.
Amid a deteriorating economic environment, the main benefit from consolidation could be to ease the pressure on airlinesâ€™ revenues. Fewer carriers means less competition, which in turn should mean different pricing tactics by the remaining airlines.