Ryanair plans to buy stake at new Austrian leisure carrier Laudamotion

Niki Lauda aims to turn a profit from next year with Laudamotion, the airline he has rebranded after buying it back from insolvent Air Berli. (Reuters)
Updated 21 March 2018
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Ryanair plans to buy stake at new Austrian leisure carrier Laudamotion

BERLIN: Ryanair plans to buy a stake in new Austrian leisure carrier Laudamotion, helping former motor racing champion Niki Lauda to get the airline up and running and giving the Irish carrier a bigger presence in Germany and Austria.
Ryanair has agreed to buy an initial 24.9 percent stake in Laudamotion, formed out of insolvent carrier Niki which was part of Air Berlin, and plans for that to rise to 75 percent “as soon as possible,” subject to EU approval.
The Irish budget carrier will invest less than €50 million, though will provide an additional €50 million in funding for start-up and operating costs in the first year.
“This Laudamotion partnership is good news for Austrian and German consumers/visitors who can now look forward to real competition, more choice and lower fares,” Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary said in a statement.
Niki, which flies to tourist destinations from Germany and Austria using A320 planes, was seen as the most attractive part of insolvent Air Berlin.
Germany’s largest carrier Lufthansa dropped plans to buy Niki in December over competition concerns.
British Airways parent IAG then won a bidding round, before that decision was canceled over legal action. Lauda eventually won a new bidding process to buy back the airline he founded.


Social media influencers in the UAE must let followers know if posts were paid for

Updated 2 min 45 sec ago
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Social media influencers in the UAE must let followers know if posts were paid for

DUBAI: UAE’s Federal National Council issued a new rule on Tuesday for social media influencers demanding they declare when their posts were paid advertisements, local daily Khaleej Times reported.
The rules come at a time when the UAE is issuing new rules for electronic and social media platforms in what the government says is an effort to make them more reliable.
“This is a business, just like any other, and these social media influencers must be transparent, especially since many of them have hundreds of thousands of followers who trust their judgment,” said FNC member Hamad Al-Rahoomi. “If you post a video promoting a cafe, you need to inform your followers that you are being paid for it, before being paid.”
Members of the council called for “closer observation” of the content shared by influencers, especially on Instagram and Snapchat.