Virgin Atlantic has swooped in with a counter-bid for the purchase of BMI. BA’s parent company, International Airlines Group (IAG) had reached an agreement in principle with Lufthansa (the parent company of BMI) last month, however Virgin Atlantic’s offer has changed the situation considerably.
It was no secret that Virgin Atlantic had been against IAG purchasing BMI as it believed that BA already had too much of a monopoly over Heathrow.
“British Airways’ hold over Heathrow is already too dominant and we are very concerned – as the competition authorities should also be – that BA’s purchase of BMI would be disastrous for consumer choice and competition,” said a Virgin spokesman.
“We believe that our offer will lead to the best outcome for the millions of consumers that fly in and out of Heathrow every year.”
According to reports, Virgin’s offer is actually lower than IAG’s, however it is likely that a deal would be completed much more quickly because of less scrutiny from competition authorities, which could make it more appealing for Lufthansa.
Lufthansa has not yet made a final decision, but is expected to to so early in the new year.