Shareholding Acquired In Comair

British Airways today completed the purchase of an 18.3 per cent shareholding in Comair, its franchise partner in Southern Africa.

The £17 million (R168 million) investment marks a further cementing of the successful relationship between the two airlines, which began in October 1996 when Comair became British Airways’ first franchise outside Europe. In addition to being a good investment in its own right, the shareholding will facilitate closer co-ordination of British Airways’ and Comair’s operations in the region.

Roger Maynard, British Airways’ Director of Investments and Joint Ventures, said: “We are very pleased to be making this investment in South Africa. Comair is an extremely
well-managed airline with an excellent financial and service delivery record. We look forward to building on the successes that we have already achieved with Comair during the past three years. In addition, the investment demonstrates our confidence in, and commitment to South Africa.”

Dave Novick, Chairman of Comair, said: “Our relationship with British Airways has provided significant benefits to Comair. The British Airways branding of our local product has been successfully integrated and established in the Southern Africa market. With this investment agreement, we can confidently look forward to a long-lasting partnership with British Airways for the benefit of our customers, employees and shareholders.”

British Airways has acquired the 18.3 per cent shareholding in Comair from previous investors Gensec and CNI.