Braathens Aviation to take over Sweden's Golden Air

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Sweden's Braathens Aviation has agreed to take a majority stake in regional carrier Golden Air, with an option to acquire the entire company.

Braathens Aviation, which already includes regional operator Malmo Aviation, said it had signed an agreement to buy a 75% share of Trollhattan-based Golden Air from its shipping group owner Erik Thun.

It has the option over the next three years to purchase the remaining 25%.

Golden Air will become part of the Braathens Aviation Group whose companies also include Braathens Leasing - a customer for the Bombardier CSeries - and domestic operation Sverigeflyg, as well as techincal and training activities.

The new addition will "continue as an independent unit" within Braathens Aviation and Anders Kallsson will remain as managing director for the time being.

Golden Air uses 16 aircraft - the Saab 2000 and 340 as well as ATR 72s - and operates between Stockholm Bromma and Trollhattan, while also performing several regional services on behalf of other carriers, such as Finland's Blue1.

Closing of the transaction - the terms of which have not been disclosed - is subject to competition authority approval. Braathens Aviation chief Knut Solberg said the common ownership of the various companies would enable the group to "strengthen its presence in the Swedish market" and at Bromma airport in particular.