Beleaguered budget airline WOW Air has been completely bought out by Icelandair Group, Viðskiptablaðið reports. The board of Icelandair Group bought every share in WOW Air, pending approval from Icelandair shareholders and the Icelandic Competition Authority.
“WOW Air has built up a strong brand over the years, and accomplished a lot under that brand, to and from Iceland over the Atlantic Ocean,” acting director of Icelandair Group Bogi Nils Bogason said in a statement. “It’s a great opportunity for earnings, but the airline will continue to operate under its own initiative and under its own brand.”
MBL reports that WOW Air’s value is currently at 2.1 billion ISK; roughly just over 17 million USD. With this buyout, WOW Air owners will now own a 5.4% share of Icelandair Group, as WOW Air was bought entirely with shares in Icelandair Group. The buyers are obliged to hold onto some of these shares for at least six months, and the rest for 12 months total.
Skúli Mogensen, the director and founder of WOW Air, said he was “very proud of our accomplishments and what we have built in recent years,” saying that the buyout represents a “new chapter” for the airline to grow and expand its reach.