Deal marks shifting alliances in evolving Asia-Pacific
In a deal aimed at supporting both airlines in their battles against competitors, Singapore Airlines has bought a 10% stake in Virgin Australia. The A$105 million (€84 million) deal will help Virgin Australia challenge Qantas, its main rival in the domestic market, and help SIA battle in Asia against intruding airlines from China, Europe and the Middle East. It follows the announcement earlier this month of a possible alliance between Qantas and Emirates. Etihad is already a minority stake holder of Virgin Australia.
A number of other deals have also been announced today. Virgin Australia is buying a 60% stake in Singapore Airlines’ struggling Australian low-cost airline Tiger Airways. Upon regulators’ approval, Virgin and Tiger will also invest together in increasing Tiger’s fleet. And Virgin says it will take over the regional airline Skywest.