Airline in IAG's sights

British Airways owner may bid for Norwegian

Norwegian has adopted the budget model for long-haul flights

International Airlines Group, owner of British Airways, says it may mount a bid for Norwegian after acquiring a 4.6% stake.

Shares in Norwegian surged 38% after news of the bid interest emerged, while IAG fell 0.5%.

Norwegian said it has not held talks with IAG but said the interest “confirms the sustainability and potential of our business model and global growth”.

Norwegian has made its presence known in the aviation market, bringing a budget airline model to the long-haul sector, although the industry is divided as to whether it works for trans-Atlantic traffic, and the airline itself is loss-making.

It has dropped one of its flights between Edinburgh and the US and cut back its two others because of ministers postponing a reduction in air taxes.

Flights ended to Bradley in Connecticut in March, just nine months after they were launched. Its route between the capital and Stewart, north of New York City, were reduced from daily to four a week.

Flights to Providence in Rhode Island, south of Boston, were trimmed from five times a week to three.

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