BA increases Iberia stake to 13.15 percent
03/27/2008|10:41:00 AM|Eyefortravel
Published: 25 Mar 2008´╝ÜBritish Airways is reportedly in talks with the major shareholder of Iberia and has not ruled out making a bid for the carrier.

As per the information available, BA chief executive Willie Walsh confirmed talks have taken pace with Caja Madrid, the investment bank with a 23% shareholding in Iberia. BA is hoping closer ties with the carrier will open up access to South America and the lucrative Latin American market.

Last week BA took its shareholding in Iberia to 13.15% after buying a further 3% holding in the carrier for £52 million.

The move to take another 3% in Iberia came only months after BA pulled out of making a full takeover move for the company, raising questions about its intentions.

"This purchase reflects the strategic importance we attach to our relationship with Iberia and our continued confidence in its management," said BA chief executive Willie Walsh in a statement announcing that BA´s stake had increased to 13.15 percent.