Belfast Telegraph

Aer Lingus takeover by BA owner is a done deal

By John Mulligan

IAG's €1.36bn (£1bn) offer for Aer Lingus has finally closed, with the former Irish state-owned carrier now a part of the British Airways owner.

IAG, headed by chief executive Willie Walsh, said it had received acceptances in respect of 98.05% of Aer Lingus shares for its offer.

British Airways - which is part of IAG - operates six flights every day to Heathrow from Belfast City, a route which is also served by Aer Lingus, with three flights a day.

Aer Lingus shares are expected to be delisted from the Dublin and London stock exchanges on September 17.

Last month, Mr Walsh welcomed Aer Lingus to IAG, saying the airline would benefit from new routes that would in turn benefit customers as well as the Irish economy and tourism.

Mr Walsh will unveil his strategy for Aer Lingus in November. He wants to use the carrier to expand IAG's transatlantic business via Dublin. A report by Goodbody Stockbrokers noted the IAG move is likely to boost traffic at Aer Lingus from 9.8 million passengers last year to 15 million by 2020.

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