Ryanair seeks EU approval for bid
Ryanair is seeking EU regulatory approval for its third takeover bid for Aer Lingus, the European Commission confirmed today.
The Commission, which acts as EU competition watchdog, said on its website that it would decide by August 29th whether to clear the deal. Ryanair notified the Commission of its bid on Tuesday.
The Commission vetoed Ryanair's 2007 attempted takeover of Aer Lingus, in which the Government holds a 25 per cent stake.
Ryanair, which already owns 29.8 per cent of its rival, has submitted a formal bid of €694 million for Aer Lingus.
Ryanair has offered to pay €1.30 a share in cash for the remaining stock.
In its response, Aer Lingus said called on shareholders to reject Ryanair’s bid for the business, saying the offer from its rival “seriously undervalues” the airline.
Aer Lingus also said it did not believe the offer was in the best interests of shareholders.
The EU previously blocked Ryanair’s bid for Aer Lingus in 2007, saying a takeover would allow the discount airline to dominate 35 routes and control 80 per cent of the market in Dublin. The airline lost a 2010 appeal of the merger ban.