Consolidation in Norway: Norwegian pays Wideroe

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The airline company low cost Norwegian Air Shuttle will pay 106 million dollars to acquire its rival Wideroethe two to continue to exist separately but representing almost 60% of the domestic market in Norway.

The Norwegian low-cost flight specialist announced on July 6, 2023 that it had reached an agreement for 1.13 billion crowns ($106 million) with WF Holding AS to acquire Widerøe, Norway’s leading regional carrier, which will retain its brand and repster independently. “Connecting Widerøe’s extensive regional route network with Norwegian’s attractive domestic and international routes ensures a customer offering with better connectivity and a seamless end-to-end experience,” a statement said. Widerøe operates at over 40 airports across Norway, in addition to some major European airports (Sweden, Denmark, Faroe Islands, UK, Germany), while Norwegian offers over 300 routes to 114 destinations in the Nordic countries and in Europe.

The networks of the two airlines overlap very little: out of 107 domestic routes, 85 operated by Wideroe and 22 by Norwegian, only about ten are operated in competition (including the high season Bergen – Nice, also offered by SAS Scandinavian).

This is a milestone in Norwegian aviation history. Our two airlines have co-existed for many years and nobody knows the aviation market in Norway better. With this transaction, we will now create a streamlined and more comprehensive offering for all customers, and we look forward to delivering seamless travel across all of our route networks. said Geir Karlsen, CEO of Norwegian. Which promises an improved offer, more efficient operations “ which will lay the foundations for a strong Norwegian aviation industry with local jobs and good working conditions “. The consolidation of new opportunities for collaboration with the travel industry in Norway to promote tourism throughout the country: ” We will ensure that all passengers benefit from our extensive offer, including our attractive loyalty program Norwegian Reward “Explained the leader of the low cost.

Although we have a strong presence in Norway, we are smaller in an international context. The level of taxation of air travel in Norway is particularly high, which, combined with a fierce international competition, makes it difficult for a small regional airline to persevere without a strong partner. We are therefore very pleased to join forces with Norwegian, and we are delighted to have an industrial owner who aspires to further develop both companies. We are convinced that this solution is in the best interests of Widerøe, our employees, and not least our customers. added Stein Nilsen, CEO of Widerøe.

THE employees will remain in their companies, under existing collective agreements. Widerøe will maintain its existing agreements with other airlines. Recall that Norwegian has an all-Boeing 737 fleet (68 737-800, 13 MAX 8), while Wideroe has 48 Dash-8 Q400s and Embraer E2s.

John Walker Avatar