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Corporate Jan 9, 2013

Etihad likely to announce Indian deal only in Feb

By Firstbiz Staff

After months of speculation, the board members of Gulf-based Etihad are likely to meet this week to finalise their India investment. But the deal announcement could be deferred till February 2013 as legal and regulatory hurdles need to be dealt with, said a CNBC-TV18 report today.

The Abu-Dhabi based carrier will consider proposal from Jet Airways and Kingfisher Airlines who are keen to offload minority stakes in their companies.

Etihad's CEO James Hogan will appraise the airline's board on its India plans

Etihad's CEO James Hogan will appraise the airline's board on its India plans and will also consider funding options once it picks up stake in the Indian carrier.

While it is still unclear which Indian carrier is courting investment from Etihad, Jet may just trump Kingfisher in the race for funds as talks between Jet and Etihad have already progressed, with the airline offering a 24 percent stake in the company.

Firstpost too had reported earlier that Jet Airways works better for Etihad considering its network and since the two airlines already have a code-sharing agreement.

"Any such alliance would give Jet several advantages, the biggest being availability of cheaper fuel at Abu Dhabi and global connectivity through Etihad's network. On its part, Etihad would gain access to smaller towns and cities in India and can feed Indian traffic to its global network," the report said.

by Firstbiz Staff

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