March 25th
2008

British Airways Still Shows Interest in Iberia

In November of last year British Airways pulled out of an Iberia takeover bid, and by the beginning of this year still held about a 10% share of Iberia stock. Last Friday though, BA showed they’re still in the game by buying about 29 million shares, increasing their stake to just over 13%. Spanish law limits core shareholders to how much stock they can purchase each year; in Iberia’s case, each is limited to 5% annually. If any shareholder passes this limit, they are required to present a purchase offer. BA head man Willie Walsh hasn’t ruled that out as a possibility: “We will consider further opportunities to increase our stake.” The reason for BA pulling out in November lies with the Spanish bank and principal shareholder Caja Madrid, who seems to have an aversion to foreign takeover interests. Stay tuned…

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