17-Feb-2010 9:22 AM

Air Berlin in negotiations to increase stake in NIKI

Air Berlin confirmed (16-Feb-2010) it is in advanced negotiations to increase its shareholding in NIKI Luftfahrt GmbH. The negotiations have not yet been completed and Air Berlin has not yet obtained the approval of its Board of Directors. A Board Meeting is scheduled for 17-Feb-2010. The German LCC is reportedly seeking to raise its stake in the Austrian carrier from 24% to 49% (Der Standard, 16-Feb-2010). [more]

NIKI, while declining to comment on the developments, stated it would make an "important announcement" at its annual earnings new conference on 18-Feb-2010. NIKI  reportedly experienced a 30% increase in profitability in 2009, on revenues of EUR275 million, with the LCC reportedly handling 2.6 million passengers (+20%) in the period (Kurier, 16-Feb-2010). NIKI plans to increase its fleet from 12 to 16 aircraft this year (Monstersandcritics, 16-Feb-2010).