Nigerian Eagle considers offers for Virgin Atlantic's stake

This story is sourced from Pro
See more Pro news »

Nigerian Eagle Airlines is considering three offers for an acquisition of Virgin Atlantic's shareholding in the carrier.

The offers include one from companies affiliated to Nigerian financial firm Nicon Insurance.

Nigerian Eagle chief executive Dapo Olumide tells ATI that other parties are to put a presentation to the carrier in a few weeks' time.

"We're looking at three [offers] at the moment," he says, stressing that none has been formally accepted by the board.

Nigerian Eagle is still 49%-owned by Virgin Atlantic, which has been trying to withdraw from the African carrier.

The Virgin stake is for sale, but an acquisition could also include shares from the institutional investors that hold the balance of the airline.

Olumide says that "time is of the essence" and Nigerian Eagle wants to reach an agreement as soon as possible, allowing it to complete its rebranding from Virgin Nigeria.

Nigerian Eagle has a fleet of five Boeing 737-300s leased from GECAS and a pair of Embraer 190s from an order for 10 regional jets placed in 2007.

Olumide says the order has been restructured to postpone deliveries until there is clarity regarding the new owner. "We don't want to burden them with $400 million of aircraft orders if, for example, they'd rather lease," he says.