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British Airways Parent Offers $34 Million for Vueling Delisting

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May 24 (Bloomberg) -- British Airways parent IAG SA offered 26.3 million euros ($34 million) for the 9.49 percent of Barcelona-based Vueling Airlines SA it doesn’t yet own as the third-largest European airline seeks to stem losses in Spain.

The delisting offer of 9.25 euros a share values Vueling at 276.6 million euros and matches what International Consolidated Airlines Group paid when acquiring majority ownership of the low-cost carrier, the London-based company said in a statement.

IAG bid for control of profitable Vueling after losses at its Madrid-based Iberia unit led to a 23 million-euro deficit in 2012. Chief Executive Officer Willie Walsh has said Vueling will remain a standalone unit, with CEO Alex Cruz reporting to him rather than via Iberia, where 3,000 jobs are being eliminated.

“Vueling will be delisted from the Barcelona, Bilbao, Madrid and Valencia stock exchanges upon successful completion of the offer,” IAG today. A meeting of Vueling shareholders has been called for June 27 to approve the delisting, IAG said.

IAG, which inherited a 45.85 percent stake in Vueling from Iberia when the group was formed via a merger with BA in 2011, raised its stake to 90.51 percent after most minority investors accepted its offer of 9.25 euros a share.

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Wall in London at rwall6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Benedikt Kammel at bkammel@bloomberg.net

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