Etihad Airways, the fast-growing Middle Eastern airline, has bought a near 3% in Aer Lingus and is in talks with the Dublin-based carrier about further cooperation.
In a statement, Aer Lingus said, “Aer Lingus and Etihad are engaged in discussions which to date have focused on reciprocal code-share opportunities.” A code-sharing arrangement would enable the airlines to sell seats on each other’s flights.
“Future discussions may explore additional commercial and cost opportunities to develop a closer working relationship in areas such as joint procurement.”
Aer Lingus further stated that Etihad “does not intend” to increase the stake beyond the 2.987% acquired. That specific amount was just below the 3% holding that would necessitate a stock disclosure. The 2.987% stake represents 11 million shares, which based on recent market prices gives Etihad’s investment a price tag of approximately EUR11 million.