NewsWorldThe IAG group becomes a shareholder of Air Europa...

The IAG group becomes a shareholder of Air Europa with the taking of 20% of the capital

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The IAG holding company has acquired a fifth of the airline Air Europa. In March of this year, the group that includes Iberia, British Airways and Vueling granted Globalia an unsecured loan of 100 million over seven years with the option of converting it into a stake of up to 20% in the capital of Air Europa . Yesterday, the company directed by Luis Gallego executed this option, thus becoming a shareholder of the Hidalgo family’s airline. In this way, Iberia is a little closer to its goal of acquiring Air Europa, which began in 2019 but was interrupted by the pandemic. Iberia sources specify that it is a financial investment and the airline will not have a place on the Board of Directors of its competitor. The IAG group agreed in November 2019 to buy Air Europa for 1,000 million, but the arrival of the pandemic stopped the operation. With all the planes on the ground and travel restrictions, Air Europa needed the Spanish Government’s bailout worth 475 million and an ICO credit worth 140 that forced Iberia to rethink the purchase in January last year: it lowered the price to 500 million to pay in five years. A few months later the agreement began to falter. When traffic seemed to be beginning to recover, at the end of last year, Iberia paid 75 million to the Hidalgo family company (double the 40 established in the contract in case of breaking the agreement) with the aim of renegotiating the conditions during January of this year to reach a new agreement that could have the approval of the European Commission. Iberia aspires to buy Air Europa with the aim of transforming Madrid airport into what it calls a hub that can rival the four “largest hubs in Europe: Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London-Heathrow and Paris-Charles De Gaulle”.

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