It was announced this morning that IAG has bought Spanish Airline Air Europa for €1 billion.
The move is somewhat interesting as being based in Madrid alongside Iberia, who is also owned by IAG, this essentially creates a monopoly at the Spanish airport.
Acquiring Air Europa would add a new competitive, cost effective airline to IAG, consolidating Madrid as a leading European hub and resulting in IAG achieving South Atlantic leadershipWillie Walsh, IAG Chief Executive
Currently, the airline serves 69 destinations across Europe, Latin America, The USA and The Caribbean. They operate a fleet of 65 aircraft consisting of the ATR72, Airbus A330, Boeing 737-800, Boeing 787 and Embraer E190.
It’s currently unknown whether Air Europa and Iberia will remain as separate brands or be merged once the deal is complete. Another option is to mix and match aircraft and routes between Iberia and Level, creating a larger long haul low cost carrier out of Barcelona.
Currently, the airline is a member of the SkyTeam alliance. As IAG owned airlines British Airways and Iberia are members of the OneWorld Alliance, it’s likely that Air Europa will leave SkyTeam.
IAG owns Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia, Level and Vueling.
The deal is expected to be completed by the end of 2020.
The airline was founded in 1986 as the Spanish division of British holiday airline Air Europe. Initially, Air Europa wore an identical livery to that of Air Europe. However, when the British airline collapsed in 1991 the Spanish division remained profitable. By the end of the 1990’s, the former Air Europe livery had disappeared in favour of a blue and white livery. The airline also updated its fleet with new generation Boeing 737 aircraft.
Currently, the Airbus A330 fleet is scheduled to be replaced with Boeing 787-9 aircraft. The airline also has the 737MAX on order to replace their older 737 aircraft.
Header photo credit:
By Alan Wilson, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=48994990