Singapore Airlines has become the single largest shareholder in Virgin Australia by increasing its stake in the company 19.9%, reports Lucy Battersby at the Sydney Morning Herald.
The airline paid approximately $122 million or $0.48 per share for 255 million shares in an off-market agreement on April 23, according to a market announcement.
Shares in Virgin Australia were purchased directly from Richard Branson’s Virgin Group in Europe and last traded at 0.45 per share.
A Virgin Australia spokeswoman declined to comment on changes to the share register, “other than to say that we believe this is a further demonstration of confidence in our strategy,” the SMH reported.
Singapore Airlines is largely owned by the Singapore government through its investment fund Temasek Holdings.
In a statement from Singapore Airlines, chief executive Goh Choon Phong said: “Our partnership with Virgin Australia has been going from strength to strength, offering a wide range of consumer benefits.
“Increasing our stake in Virgin Australia is another example of Singapore Airlines’ deep commitment to the important Australian market. It also demonstrates our support for the ongoing transformation of Virgin Australia, which has created a more competitive aviation market in Australia.”