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August 5, 2016

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Hainan Airlines buys stake in Azul

CHINESE carrier Hainan Airlines has completed a US$450-million purchase of nearly a quarter stake in Brazil’s third largest airline Azul, according to a statement issued yesterday, as its parent HNA embarks on an overseas investment binge.

The deal, originally announced in November, gives Hainan Airlines a 23.7 percent stake in Azul, making the Chinese company the Brazilian firm’s single largest shareholder, the statement said.

“We view Azul as a strong and lasting partner for HNA to explore further expansion and capital investment in Latin America,” Adam Tan, CEO of Hainan Airlines’ parent HNA Group, said in the statement.

HNA, a conglomerate with interests in aviation and tourism, said in May it was buying a 13 percent stake in airline Virgin Australia.

It also said the same month it was taking a share of Portuguese national airline TAP.

In July it said a US$1.5 billion offer it made for Swiss airline catering company gategroup had been successful.

Hainan Airlines will cooperate with Azul, including code sharing, route development, marketing and cargo transport, the statement said.

“We look forward to working together to create a seamless travel experience between Latin America and China,” said Tan.


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