August 3, 2018 / 9:15 AM / a year ago

IAG will not stay a shareholder in Norwegian if no takeover deal

FILE PHOTO: Willie Walsh, CEO of International Airlines Group speaks during the closing press briefing at the 2016 International Air Transport Association Annual General Meeting and World Air Transport Summit in Dublin, Ireland June 3, 2016. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - British Airways-owner IAG (ICAG.L) does not plan to remain a long-term shareholder in bid target Norwegian Air Shuttle (NWC.OL) if a takeover of the low-cost airline does not go ahead.

“If we decide that we’re not going to proceed we will not hold on to the shares,” IAG CEO Willie Walsh said on an analyst call on Friday.

In April, IAG acquired a 4.6 percent stake in Norwegian with a view to starting takeover discussions. Norwegian said in May it had rebuffed two approaches from IAG.

Walsh said earlier on Friday that he was still interested in Norwegian but there were currently no active discussions.

Reporting by Victoria Bryan and Sarah Young; editing by Costas Pitas

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