Business Travel

Avianca, Gol Agree to Join in New Holding Co.

Written by pgex7

Shareholders of Colombia’s Avianca and the controlling shareholder of Brazilian low-cost carrier Gol have signed an agreement to form a holding company that will control both carriers, the new company announced Wednesday.

The Abra Group will also own a non-controlling 100 percent economic interest in Viva’s operations in Colombia and Peru, as well as convertible debt representing a minority interest investment in Chile’s Sky Airline. Certain financial investors have committed to invest up to $350 million in shares of Abra upon closing. Further terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The carriers expect the transaction to be completed in the second half of 2022, subject to customary closing and regulatory conditions.

Avianca and Gol will continue to operate independent “brands, talent, teams and culture while benefiting from greater efficiencies and investments under common aligned ownership,” according to Abra, which is based in the United Kingdom.

The company will provide a platform for the operating airlines to “further reduce costs, achieve a greater growth of parent scale, continue to operate state-of-the-art fleet of aircraft, and expand their routes, services, product offerings and loyalty programs.” .” Customers of each carrier will have the ability to earn and use points across the brands’ loyalty programs, according to the company.

Robert Kriete will serve as Abra Group chairman. He grew Taca in the 1980s before merging it with Avianca in 2009. He also founded Mexican carrier Volaris in 2006. Gol founder Constantino de Oliveira Junior will serve as the group’s CEO. Current Avianca president and CEO Adrian Neuhauser and Gol CFO Richard Lark will serve as the group’s co-presidents in addition to maintaining their current roles at the airlines.

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