It seems investors have lost confidence that British Airways’ parent company will succeed in its bid to acquire Norwegian Air any time soon. After more turbulence on the Oslo Stock Exchange over the past week, Norwegian Air shares fell more than 3 percent again on Tuesday, to land at just NOK 252.40.
That left the Oslo-based low-fare carrier down 7.71 percent so far this week and down nearly 16 percent so far this month, according to statistics from Oslo Børs. After an earlier dive this month, shares had risen last week when its founder Bjørn Kjos told new bureau Reuters that rival Ryanair had shown interest in the company. That sent shares back up to NOK 266.70, only to fall again this week.
Major bank HSBC doesn’t think it’s likely that International Airlines Group (IAG) will buy up Norwegian and it predicts even tougher competition between the two instead. Nor do analysts at Sparebank 1 Markets see an acquisition at this point.
Not everyone is giving up on the airline, though. Sparebank 1 Markets’ chief analyst Lars-Daniel Westby told newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) on Tuesday that “We think Norwegian Air has no choice but to be sold” eventually, Westby said. The airline reported strong passenger growth a few weeks ago and a sale won’t reduce value in the banking unit launched by the airline a few years ago, Bank Norwegian. Sparebank 1 is taking Bank Norwegian into its portfolio.