Willie Walsh, the chief executive of IAG, has expressed a renewed interest in buying Bmi, in a bid to gain the airline’s valuable slots at Heathrow. Speaking at the International Air Transport Association summit in Singapore, he said a potential deal hinged on whether current owner Lufthansa was willing to sell.
He said: “I have said we are interested – it is really a decision for Lufthansa.”
Walsh, who heads up the group formed by the merger of British Airways and Iberia, also added that IAG was keen to form a joint venture with the Japan Airlines, a fellow member of oneworld, voted “World’s Leading Airline Alliance” by World Travel Awards.
Lufthansa recently gained anti-trust approval for a similar venture with All Nippon Airways.
Walsh also revealed plans for a major marketing campaign for BA to rebuild customer confidence after the 18-month industrial dispute with cabin crew. The dispute led to 22 days of strikes and cost the airline an estimated £150m.
Some of the marketing push will be linked to the 2012 London Olympics, with BA being one of the official sponsors.
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