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Olympic Air and Aegean Airlines merge by the end of the year

12 February 2010 / 12:02:35  GRReporter
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The main shareholders of the two largest Greek airlines Olympic Air and Aegean Airlines are in constant contact and are specifying the details of a possible merger that would change the whole landscape of the Greek air transport, that will be announced in a week and will be enacted by the end of the year. Until recently, Andreas Vgenopoulos president of MIG group, which owns Olympic Air, was pouring accusation after accusation of disloyalty to their competitors from Aegean, but eyewitnesses said that recently he often flirts with his colleague Thanos Vassilakis. Yesterday both businessmen announced an official release to the Athens Stock Exchange that they have been discussing opportunities for cooperation, but have not yet reached a specific agreement.

Analysts recall that a possible merger of the two companies cannot happen without the approval of the Greek Competition Commission and the European Commission. Sources from both airlines claim that the shares of the international flights of both Greek airlines are so small that monopoly is even under discussion. However, regarding domestic flights, both companies together hold 95 percent of the market. Both companies operate a total of 12 million passengers a year and have a turnover of €1.3 billion.

According to Greek media, both airlines Olympic Air and Aegean Airlines will hold 50 percent of the shares in the new company and will retain the name and logo of Olympic. Sources recall, however, that the contract for the privatization of Olympic says that the airline cannot change its owner before September 2010. The Greek Transport Ministry is closely monitoring negotiations between Vgenopoulos and Vassilakis, without intervening yet.

Tags: Olympic Air Aegean Airlines Andreas Vgenopoulos MIG Group
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