Etihad Airways Welcomes Virgin Australia Equity Investment

Abu Dhabi: Etihad Airways has welcomed the announcement by Virgin Australia that it is to acquire a majority stake in Tiger Airways and has reached an in-principle agreement to purchase Skywest Airlines.

Etihad Airways holds a 10 per cent stake in Virgin Australia Holdings.

James Hogan, President and CEO of Etihad Airways, said: “These investments by Virgin Australia consolidate its position today as Australia’s most successful and fastest-developing airline. The addition of Tiger and Skywest into its portfolio can only help Virgin Australia’s competitive position in the Australian market and across the Asia-Pacific region. We welcome this exciting move by Virgin.” Etihad Airways and Virgin Australia have developed a highly successful, multi-tiered partnership that includes code-sharing on flights, joint marketing initiatives and reciprocal earn-and-burn on their respective frequent flier programs.

The national airline of the United Arab Emirates, Etihad Airways, began operations in 2003, and in 2011 carried 8.3 million passengers. From its hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport, Etihad Airways serves 86 passenger and cargo destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and North America. Etihad Airways also hold equity investments in airberlin, Air Seychelles, Virgin Australia and Aer Lingus.