Norwegian To Acquire Regional Carrier Widerøe
Norwegian has announced its plans to acquire the regional carrier Widerøe in a deal expected to close by the end of 2023. Despite the acquisition, both airlines will continue to operate as separate carriers, providing passengers with a comprehensive network.
Founded in 1934 by Viggo Widerøe, Widerøe is the largest regional airline in the Nordic countries. Its fleet consists of 40 Bombardier Dash 8 aircraft and 3 Embraer E190-E2 aircraft, serving over 40 domestic and international destinations.
On the other hand, Norwegian Air is the fourth largest low-cost carrier in Europe, operating a fleet of 81 narrow-body jets. In 2022, the airline announced the purchase of an additional 50 jets.
“Although we have a solid footprint in Norway, we are smaller in an international context. The tax level for air travel in Norway is particularly high, and this, combined with fierce international competition, makes it difficult for a smaller regional airline to persevere without a strong partner. We are convinced that this solution is in the best interest of Widerøe, our employees, and not least our customers.” Said Stein Nilsen, CEO, Widerøe.
The acquisition is valued at $105 million and is subject to regulatory approval from Norwegian authorities.