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BA owner to buy Austrian airline for $24m

AUSTRIA, December 31, 2017

British Airways' (BA) parent company, International Airlines Group (IAG), has announced it will purchase the collapsed Austrian airline Niki for €20 million ($23.9 million) and provide additional liquidity to the company of up to €16.5 million ($19.7 million), said a report.

The sale to IAG, which was the last remaining bidder, is the final chapter in the demise of Air Berlin, the second-biggest German airline that previously owned Niki and filed for insolvency earlier this year, said a report in The National.

IAG said it will run the airline as a new subsidiary of its budget carrier Vueling, retaining about 740 former Niki staff. The assets include about 15 planes, as well as slots in airports such as Vienna, Munich and Palma.

Niki filed for insolvency earlier this month after Germany's Lufthansa backed out of a deal to buy its assets on competition concerns, grounding the fleet and stranding thousands of passengers, the report said.

The airline was founded by Niki Lauda, the Austrian ex-F1 racing champion, but was sold to Air Berlin in 2011.

Lauda made a bid to repurchase Niki, along with several others, but eventually lost out to IAG.

Air Berlin agreed to sell a large part of its airline assets to Lufthansa. It also clinched a deal with Britain's easyJet for some operations at Berlin Tegel, the report said.




Tags: Airline | BA | Austria | deal | Niki |

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