Still no merger deal for Aer Lingus and Ryanair

Thu, 21 Jun 2012 | MERGER

The ongoing attempts by Ryanair to buyout Aer Lingus have hit another wall with the smaller airline shooting down a surprise bid from Michael O'Leary's firm.

Ryanair made an offer valuing the airline at €694 million (£560 million) but a spokesman from the smaller firm made a statement stating that its board believes that the offer, “even if it is capable of completion, undervalues Aer Lingus”.

He added that earlier moves from Ryanair have failed and suggested that this one will also struggle to go through anyway: "The Board notes that Ryanair's unsolicited offer in 2006 was blocked by the European Commission and was not capable of completion and that Ryanair's second offer, in 2008, was withdrawn.

“Consequently, there is significant uncertainty that any offer from Ryanair, if made, would be capable of completion.”

The Irish government maintains a 30 per cent stake in Aer Lingus but Taoiseach Enda Kenny stated that the government will not be pressured into a “fire sale” of its asset.

“The government will use proper and appropriate consideration to the right timing, to the right price and in the best interest of the country and the people,” he added.

Mr O'Leary reportedly remains hopeful that merging forces with Aer Lingus would facilitate the creation of “one strong Irish airline” that would be capable of competing with major European companies.

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