MOSCOW, Russia – Russian Aeroflot is buying a 75% stake in ailing private airline Transaero, as Russia’s economic woes shake the industry. Interfax reports that Aeroflot will pay just 1 ruble for its indebted competitor.
The Russian national carrier’s takeover creates one of the world’s largest air transport companies. Aeroflot takes over Transaero’s 1.4 billion euro debt, and says the company will be “completely overhauled and integrated” into the group.
Transaero has reported growing passenger numbers this year, but all Russian airlines are facing tough times as the premium international travel market has dropped out of the sky, leaving the companies with their unprofitable domestic routes.