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IAG, the parent company of British Ariways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus, will be purchasing insolvent carrier Niki. The Austrian airline suspended service after parent company Air Berlin filed for insolvency. The move was so sudden that Niki left a number of passengers stranded.

Lufthansa was in talks to purchase the failing airline, but there were concerns about this resulting in a serious lack of competition. As Lufthansa is already looking to pick up a large percentage of Air Berlin’s assets (and is under scrutiny for this already), picking up yet another carrier would push the envelope even further.

All of Niki’s flights will be run as a subsidiary of Spain-based Vueling, IAG’s budget carrier. Several hundred staff will be retained, which is good news for the airline employees after Niki suspended service. The deal isn’t in the bag yet, however, as it still needs to be approved by government authorities. But I expect this to go through much more easily than Lufthansa’s attempt to pick up Niki.

Featured image courtesy of Aero Pixels under CC 2.0 license

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