Adding to the acrimony between Virgin Atlantic and British Airways, Sir Richard Branson has recently been quoted as saying that the UK government should not move to bail out financially-struggling BA.
In interviews late last week, Sir Richard, the head of Virgin Atlantic, said that any intervention by the government to help the UK flag carrier would not be in the best interests of the British public. He added that his airline would be happy to buy some of BA’s landing slots at Heathrow Airport, should the airline’s financial woes become even more serious.
He commented: “We and others are standing by ready to take on their routes and run their slots at Heathrow if they get into serious trouble. I thought the US government’s bailout of the car companies was a bad idea and it’s the same for BA.”
Branson went on to say that Virgin would not make a bid for British Airways even at knock-down prices, citing its pension deficit, which could amount to £3 billion, according to analysts. He went on to say: “It’s not worth much anymore because of the liabilities. We were thinking that about if the shares went under 100p, but it would be better to wait for its demise.”
His comments were met with anger at BA: “There have been no talks with the Government and there will be no talks with the Government. BA does not favour government support.”
www.britishairways.comAuthor's Google+ page