Qatar Airways, flydubai reject reports of interest in India’s SpiceJet

Qatar Airways said the only airline it is talking to regarding a stake purchase is low-cost carrier Indigo



Qatar Airways, which owns a 10 per cent stake in British Airways owner IAG, and Dubai’s flydubai on Tuesday separately rejected reports of interest to buy a stake in Indian budget carrier SpiceJet.

“Qatar Airways is not in talks to pursue a commercial stake in SpiceJet,” Qatar Airways said in a statement on its website, following a report in India’s Economic Times that the Indian carrier was in talks to sell a stake to Qatar Airways.

“These stake sale comments are unfounded and are believed to be deliberately spread to influence share valuations,” the Doha-based carrier added.

SpiceJet shares have surged for four sessions, hitting a two-year closing high on Tuesday at 26.60 rupees ($0.4163).

Dubai’s budget carrier flydubai also denied media reports, in an emailed statement on Tuesday, saying it is not in talks with SpiceJet.

The Indian carrier on Friday said it was in “exploratory and preliminary stage” talks with potential investors who have shown an interest in putting money into the airline.

It did not say who the potential investors were.

Qatar Airways is catching up with rivals Emirates and Etihad in terms of frequency of service to the Indian market. It remains interested in India’s biggest airline IndiGo for a stake purchase, the only airline it is in talks with, Qatar Airways said in the statement.

India’s InterGlobe Aviation Ltd, which operates IndiGo, on Tuesday filed a draft prospectus for an initial public offering to list on the domestic stock market.