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Issue Overview

IAG’s Billion-Euro Air Europa Bet

IAG’s Billion-Euro Air Europa Bet

November 11th, 2019

Issue Summary

IAG’s interest in buying Norwegian is now history. But its interest in consolidation? Anything but. The latest move is a €1b deal to buy Spain’s Air Europa, a carrier specializing in Latin America flights from Madrid. The opportunity came as Air Europa’s parent company felt heightened pressure to sell. In 2018, it earned just a 5% operating margin, no better than troubled Air France/KLM. But far from having the scale of an Air France/KLM, Air Europa was increasingly haunted by existential worries as credit card processors, spooked by the failure of Thomas Cook and others, began holding back cash from…

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