Intercontinental mergers will increase in the future
Lufthansa, the German airline, said industry mergers combining international partners would increase as companies seek higher margins.
Lufthansa, the second biggest airline in Europe, purchased Brussels Airlines along with the unprofitable Austrian U.K. units last year as traffic and fares decreased during the recession.
Globally announced airline mergers total $12.8 billion 2010, compared with $8.2 billion for all of 2009. This year deals include UAL Corp.’s acquisition of Continental Airlines Inc. and Santiago-based LAN Airlines SA’s purchase of Brazil’s TAM SA.
“The trend toward consolidation will become more intercontinental in the next years than is currently the case,” the head of Lufthansa’s subsidiary airline brands, Stefan Lauer, told reporters on Tuesday. “It remains an exciting topic.”