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Air Berlin takes sole ownership of NIKI

9-Nov-2011 10:31 AM

NIKI founder, Niki Lauda, announced (08-Nov-2011) he has sold his 50.1% stake in the carrier to Air Berlin, making Air Berlin the sole shareholder. Mr Lauda controlled his shareholding through the Lauda Private Trust. The withdrawal of the Lauda Private Trust will take place shortly in the course of restructuring measures. The Lauda Private Trust will repay a loan it received from airberlin by transferring its stake in NIKI to Air Berlin, which has held a 49.9% stake in NIKI since Jul-2010. Austrian control and majority ownership of NIKI will be ensured by a new private trust that is exclusively Austrian and will hold a majority stake in NIKI. The transfer of the stake will not involve any cash payments. NIKI will be legally independent and retain its own management board and brand, but the carrier will deepen its cooperation with Air Berlin, opening up the potential of its Vienna hub. Mr Lauda has been appointed to the board of Air Berlin as a non-executive director. [more - original PR]