Shares in International Airlines Group (IAG) have begun trading on the London Stock Exchange.
The move completes the merger of British Airways and Spanish flag-carrier Iberia, with shares up two per cent from the pair’s joint valuation on Thursday last week.
BA called time on nearly 24 years of trading under its own name last Friday.
The new company’s chief executive Willie Walsh and chairman Antonio Vazquez were present at the London Stock Exchange for the launch of IAG.
Walsh was quick to emphasise this was just the start for the new company.
“British Airways and Iberia are the first two airlines in IAG but they won’t be the last,” said Walsh.
“Our goal is for more airlines - but, importantly, the right airlines - to join the group.
“Today is the first step towards creating a multinational multi-brand airline group.”
Walsh has previously stated he has privately drawn up a list of 12 carriers he would like to see join the group.
Asian airlines are believed to be high on the list, while IAG will be looking to exploit the advantages of an anti-trust immunity recently granted with American Airlines.
BA and Iberia will retain their brands under the merger, which is expected to £337.3 million a year by its fifth year.
Together, Iberia and British Airways fly to more than 200 destinations on more than 400 aircraft, and last year they carried 55 million passengers.
BA will benefit from Iberia’s strong presence in South America, where BA operates only a handful of routes.