December 18, 2012
Etihad Airways acquires majority stake in AirBerlin topbonus frequent flyer program
Etihad Airways reported the purchase of a majority stake in a new entity incorporated to own airberlin’s topbonus frequent flyer program, the first step in the establishment of a global loyalty management platform. The new entity will seek to offer new opportunities for topbonus members to collect and redeem topbonus miles around the world, including the ability to use PointsPay to convert miles into cash payments at more than 30 million outlets worldwide. Etihad Airways has taken a 70% holding in the new company, with airberlin taking the remaining 30%. The total transaction value is €200m, which is being financed by an equity injection of €50m and debt financing of €150m, provided by HSBC International and Commerzbank. The entity will become part of a new loyalty management company being established by Etihad Airways. This company will allow Etihad Airways and its partners to target the fast-growing, profitable global loyalty management market more effectively. The new loyalty group will have global scale and a critical mass of valuable, high-spending consumers.