American Airlines says Qatar Airways interested in buying 10% stake

American Airlines said Qatar Airways had expressed interest in buying as much as a 10 per cent stake worth at least $808 million in the US airline.
American Airlines said Qatar Airways had expressed interest in buying a 10 per cent stake worth at least US$808 million (S$1.12 billion).
American Airlines said Qatar Airways had expressed interest in buying a 10 per cent stake worth at least US$808 million (S$1.12 billion). PHOTO: REUTERS

(Reuters) - American Airlines Group said on June 22 that Qatar Airways, the Gulf country's state-owned airline, had expressed interest in buying a 10 per cent stake worth at least US$808 million in the No.1 US airline.

Shares of American Airlines rose 5.5 percent to US$51.08 in premarket trading.

The news comes just weeks after Qatar was engulfed in a diplomatic row with neighbor Saudi Arabia, which led other nations including Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain in cutting ties with Doha.

Qatar Airways indicated that it would buy the stake on the open market, American Airlines said in a regulatory filing.

American said its certificate of incorporation prohibits anyone from acquiring 4.75 per cent or more of the company's outstanding stock without advance approval from the board following a written request.

The company's board did not receive any written request from Qatar Airways, American added. American Airlines also noted that foreign ownership laws limited the total percentage of foreign voting interest in a US company to 24.9 per cent.