Aegean Airlines signed (23-Oct-2013) a definitive agreement with Marfin Investment Group for the acquisition of Olympic Air. Olympic Air will now operate as a subsidiary of Aegean Airlines. The transfer of 100% of Olympic Air's shares was completed on 23-Oct-2013, at a cost of EUR72 million to be paid in installments. Aegean Airlines advanced the amount of EUR20 million on 22-Oct-2013, with the remainder to be paid in five EUR10.4 million annual installments, the first of which was paid on 23-Oct-2013. A presence conference will be held on 31-Oct-2013 to outline the company's post-acquisition planning. [more - original PR] [more - original PR - Greek]
Aegean Airlines completes acquisition of Olympic Air
You may also be interested in the following articles...
Aegean Airlines cuts capacity for first time since Olympic Air acquisition; 2016 margin falls
In 2017 the Aegean Airlines Group will make its first cut in seat capacity and fleet numbers since 2012. This follows three years of rapid expansion by the group since its Olympic Air acquisition in 2013. Olympic's all turboprop fleet focuses on the domestic market but also helps to feed Aegean's international network, particularly through its Athens hub. Cuts will focus on the domestic market.
Aegean will also make an important longer term fleet decision in 2017, or early 2018. The majority of its aircraft leases will need to be replaced between 2019 and 2023, and it is weighing the options. Aegean currently operates Airbus narrowbodies, but will consider the Boeing 737MAX in addition to the A320neo family.
Aegean's last capacity cut was in 2012, the end of a four year period of losses when Greece was in a deep multi year recession. Since then it has made healthy profits, but while profitable its operating margin fell in 2016 for the second successive year. Greece has experienced rapid capacity growth from LCCs, led by Ryanair. A decline in Aegean's unit revenue over three years has now prompted a pause for what its Executive Vice Chairman has called "consolidation and readjustment".
Emirates Athens-Newark fifth freedom adds to season of trans-Atlantic disruption; a test for Trump
On 23-Jan-2017, the first full business day of the Trump administration, Emirates announced it would start Dubai-Athens-Newark service on 12-Mar-2017, with a daily 777-300ER. Emirates' 12-Mar-2017 launch of service will undoubtedly add to the list of complaints from the big three US airlines – American, Delta and United.
The list of potential protective targets is growing as the new Administration settles in: renewing the fight against Gulf fifth freedoms while pursuing a blockage of DOT's grant of a permit to Norwegian Air International; Gulf airlines in their home market; and unfair access in China.
It is difficult to see the US airlines winning all of their claims. At worst, their mounting complaints will result in the details being lost as the new administration under Trump eyes indisputable wins with infrastructure and non aviation transportation matters. The loudest voices may be ignored until there is a full government in place to wade through the complainers.