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British Airways and Iberia merger approved

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Europe's fourth largest airlines are formed as the shareholders of both Iberia and British Airways voted in favor of the merger. The combined fleet of these two carriers will consist of 406 aircraft. More than 250 destinations all over the world will be operated.

International Airlines Group

Both air carriers are to be transformed into the holding company International Airlines Group. The merger received an approval on November 29, 2010 at both companies shareholders general meetings. The final step is expected to be taken on January 24, 2011 when the holding will begin trading on stock exchanges. British Airways shareholders are to own 56% of the holding, the rest Iberia's share­holders.

Both brands remain

While based under one holding company, both airlines will preserve their brands. We will still be seeing British Airways and Iberia flights separately as both airlines are retaining their traffic rights and operational independence. The combined power of these two makes the new holding Europe's fourth largest air carrier. Lufthansa with 76 million passengers in 2009, Air France KLM Group with 71 million and Ryanair with 66.5 million are ahead.

Source: ATW Online

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