December 13, 2019 / 5:05 PM / 2 months ago

Foreigners could buy unlimited stakes in Lufthansa holding - Spiegel

FILE PHOTO: Lufthansa presents its new logo during a press event in a maintenance hangar of the airline at the airport in Frankfurt am Main, Germany February 7, 2018. REUTERS/Ralph Orlowski

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Foreign investors will be able to buy unlimited stakes in the holding company proposed by Germany’s largest airline Lufthansa (LHAG.DE), German magazine Der Spiegel reported on Friday.

Spiegel said the new structure proposed by Lufthansa was aimed at attracting more capital from abroad as at present the majority of the airline must be German-owned in order to retain its flying rights in many countries.

Lufthansa said on Wednesday it was planning to adopt a holding structure and manage its core brand separately, following pressure from investors to simplify its operations and improve efficiency.

A Lufthansa spokesman on Friday confirmed it was planning to spin off its airline operations to a foundation, which in turn would be controlled by a holding company.

Supporters of a holding structure cite the example of IAG (ICAG.L), which runs British Airways, Iberia, Vueling and Aer Lingus as separate profit centres.

Reporting by Sabine Wollrab; writing by Thomas Seythal; editing by Alexander Smith

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