Bloomberg News

Qatar Air Has Identified European Takeover Target, Al Baker Says

January 23, 2012

Jan. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Qatar Airways Ltd. is examining a potential acquisition in Europe, where the carrier last year purchased a stake in freight operator Cargolux International SA, Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said today.

The Gulf region’s second-largest airline has “identified” a target or targets as it looks for takeover prospects, Al Baker said in a briefing at the Bahrain Air Show.

“We need to look at every business opportunity we can get,” Al Baker said of prospects in Europe. “I just want to make sure Qatar Airways grows in a very sustained environment.”

Qatar Air is also interested in investing in India, though overseas carriers currently face hurdles that make such a move impractical, the executive said.

“The climate for airlines to invest in India should be conducive to proper business processes,” he said. “We will not go to India just to be a partner -- we are going to help them become more profitable, to get further investment, further capital, but then we also need to have return.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Tamara Walid in Abu Dhabi at twalid@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Jasper at cjasper@bloomberg.net


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