JetBlue launches hostile takeover bid for Spirit Airlines

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May 16 (Reuters) – JetBlue Airways Corp (JBLU.O) launched a hostile cash takeover bid for Spirit Airlines Inc (SAVE.N) on Monday, days after the discount carrier rejected an offer from more great rival.

JetBlue, which previously offered $33 a share, is embroiled in a battle for control of Spirit with Frontier Group Holdings and has argued a deal will help better compete with the ‘big four’ U.S. airlines who control nearly 80% of the passenger market.

In a letter to Spirit shareholders on Monday, JetBlue offered $30 per share and said it was prepared to “negotiate in good faith a consensual transaction at $33, subject to due diligence.”

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Spirit rejected the previous offer, saying it was unlikely to win approval from regulators. Read more

JetBlue said Monday it had filed a “Vote No” proxy circular urging Spirit shareholders to vote against the planned merger with Frontier, which offered $21.66 in cash and stock for each share of the priced carrier. reduced.

Shares of Spirit rose more than 19% to $20.28 in premarket trading.

Frontier and Spirit did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment.

Spirit is due to hold a shareholder meeting on June 10 to vote on its proposed merger with Frontier. Read more

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Reporting by Tanvi Mehta in Bangalore; Editing by Aditya Soni and Sriraj Kalluvila

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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