Airline sells stake to investment group
NEW ZEALAND – Air New Zealand has sold most of its stake in Virgin Australia to a Chinese investment group.
The airline said it had sold just under 20 per cent of the Australian airline to China’s Nanshan Investments for about $240 million.
Air New Zealand said in March it was looking to quit Virgin Australia so it could concentrate on other growth opportunities.
The deal will leave it with a small stake in Virgin, which has already had Singapore Airlines and Etihad as major investors, and the two will continue their trans-Tasman alliance.
Nanshan has a broad range of aviation investments including a fledgling airline, plane maintenance and tourism.
Last month Virgin arranged for another Chinese company, Hainan Aviation, to become a significant shareholder.
Air New Zealand is likely to have incurred significant losses on its five-year investment in Virgin, which has struggled to make a profit.