Etihad Increases Virgin Australia Stake To 6.1%

The Abu Dhabi-based carrier bought over $10 million worth of Virgin shares to raise its stake from 5.1 per cent last month.

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways has increased its stake in Virgin Australia Holdings to 6.1 per cent after buying shares worth over (Aus) $10.6 million over the last three weeks.

According to a regulatory filing on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX), Etihad purchased 24,000 additional shares from the market to raise its stake in Virgin from 5.01 per cent last month.

Virgin Australia confirmed in the ASX document that Abu Dhabi carrier bought the shares between July 24 and August 17 to build up its stake.

Etihad first announced in June that it had acquired a 3.6 per cent equity stake in the Australian airline. Last month, the Abu Dhabi carrier received approval from Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board to increase its stake in Virgin to a maximum of 10 per cent.

Etihad, which is currently on an expansion spree, recently bought a three per cent stake in Irish airline Aer Lingus. The airline already has stakes in airberlin and Air Seychelles.

Last month, the Abu Dhabi airline announced that it made revenues $1.25 billion in the second quarter of this year, a 31 per cent increased compared to Q2 last year.