Aegean and Olympic Air talks focus on merger

Talks between Aegean Airlines and Olympic Air could lead to a merger between the two air carriers into a company with turnover in excess of 1 billion euros, sources said yesterday. On Thursday, the two companies caught the market by surprise announcing that their main shareholders are in talks «for possible cooperation.» Company sources indicated that talks are focusing on merging the two companies with each airline taking a 50 percent stake. Brokers described the news as positive for Aegean Airlines, which is facing more aggressive competition from recently privatized Olympic Air, but added that competition issues will be closely scrutinized by authorities. The two airlines jointly control 95 percent of Greece’s air travel market.