November 13: After much speculation in the media British Airways and Spanish airline Iberia confirmed that the two carriers are to merge to create “a new, leading European airline group that will bring significant benefits for customers.”
The merger is expected to be complete in late 2010 and will create a new airline with 419 aircraft, 205 destinations and revenues of around €15 billion a year. BA Chief Executive Willie Walsh is expected to become the head of the new airline, although both current entities will retain existing branding.
In a press release, BA says that benefits of the merger will include a larger combined network for passengers and cargo, greater potential for growth and “annual synergies of approximately €400 million.”
Airliner World magazine will carry more news on this story in forthcoming issues.