IAG takeover of Aer Lingus now 'wholly unconditional'
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IAG takeover of Aer Lingus now 'wholly unconditional'

BRITISH Airways owner IAG’s takeover of Aer Lingus is now irreversible, after Ryanair formally agreed the sale of its shares in Ireland’s national airline.

The deal is now “wholly unconditional” after IAG overcame the final obstacle in the long-running negotiations.

Ryanair had owned over 29 per cent of Aer Lingus.

After it agreed to accept IAG’s offer to buy its shares, the budget airline missed its deadline to formally accept the offer in July.

IAG then extended the deadline to August 18.

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It said in a statement: "Ryanair's acceptance was a condition of the offer which is now wholly unconditional as all the conditions have been satisfied.”

The confirmed €1.4billion takeover by IAG means the company now controls more than 95 per cent of Aer Lingus.

The deal means that Aer Lingus investors will receive a payout worth €2.50 per share.

It is expected that Aer Lingus shareholders will begin receiving payment for their shares in the next fortnight.

Remaining shareholders have until September 1 to sell their shares.

The sale of Aer Lingus had caused concerns that Ireland would no longer have a national airline, with issue being debated in the Dáil.

Last December Aer Lingus initially rejected IAG’s €1.2billion offer.

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A revised secondary offer was also rejected, before IAG made a further bid of €1.4billion, which was successful.