Norwegian Air gets green light to acquire regional airline Widerøe

Norway’s regulatory body assessed that the merger will not have a major impact on competition for air travel, but only two carriers operate flights in the country

Norway’s antitrust body has approved the acquisition of regional airline Widerøe by Norwegian Air. The deal had been announced in July for a value of 1.13 billion Norwegian kroner (US$110 million).

Initially, the Norwegian Competition Authority had considered the merger harmful to the country’s aviation market, but this time concluded that the deal “will not significantly harm effective competition in the Norwegian aviation market.”

However, the merger will leave just two airlines offering flights to Norwegians – in addition to Norwegian, there is SAS operating in the Nordics.

According to the two companies, Widerøe will continue to operate as a separate brand. The regional carrier has a fleet of 46 Dash 8 turboprops and three Embraer E190-E2, having been the launch customer for the new family of jets.

Widerøe E190-E2 (Anna Zvereva)

Norwegian Air emerged as an ultra-low-cost airline and operated long-distance flights with Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft.

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However, after repeated losses and the crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the airline implemented a restructuring plan that caused the fleet and flight network to shrink.

Norwegian currently has a fleet of 42 Boeing 737s, including six 737 MAX 8s.


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