Ryanair chief executive Michael O'Leary is increasingly confident his company can prevail in its third offer in five years for Irish rival Aer Lingus. Ryanair launched its bid in June
Ryanair launched its third offer in five years, making a $872 million bid that Aer Lingus has urged its shareholders to reject.
Meanwhile, O'Leary is also reportedly interested in buying a 25 per cent stake in Stansted Airport, London's third-biggest airport.
According to the Irish Times, Europe's competition regulator launched an in-depth review of Ryanair's latest Aer Lingus bid last week, in a move that signals the Irish airline may have to make major concessions to ease competition concerns.
'We are confident that the remedies package will be enough to satisfy competition issues,' O'Leary told a news conference in London.
‘There are 46 cross over routes and we will remedy all of them by getting airlines to come to Dublin and take them over,' O'Leary added, referring to the routes that Ryanair and Aer Lingus both operate.
Ryanair already owns 30 per cent of Aer Lingus, but had its last major bid turned down by the European Commission in 2007 and decided to drop a second bid in 2009.
O'Leary said Ryanair was in talks with 'a number of potential bidders' who want the airline involved in a consortium bid for Stansted airport.
'We want a stake of nothing more than 24.9 per cent in Stansted. It would cause regulatory problems if we were seen to have too large a share in an airport,' O'Leary told the Times.