EU officials are still pondering it, Irish government officials appear opposed to it, and not a few fans of Aer Lingus are worried by it. But the pursuit of the former Irish flag carrier by budget airline Ryanair is still very much on. And Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary says he is still hopeful that the European Commission will sanction the airline’s €694 million attempt to buy Aer Lingus.
After last week’s Ryanair annual general meeting, O’Leary also warned that Aer Lingus faces being broken up if Ryanair’s latest takeover attempt fails. Speaking to reporters following the meeting in Dublin, O’Leary said that the Ryanair has presented “radical remedies” to Brussels in an effort to secure approval.
He said that a number of airlines have already told Ryanair that they will begin servicing routes to and from Dublin that Ryanair would plan to relinquish under a deal to acquire Aer Lingus. Ryanair already holds a 29.4 percent stake in Aer Lingus. The Irish government’s stake is 25.4 percent.