International Consolidated Airlines Group’s (LON:IAG) long-haul low-cost airline Level will have a fleet of 30 aircraft by 2022, the group‘s chief executive Willie Walsh has said. The FTSE 100 company, which also owns British Airways, Iberia, Aer Lingus and Spanish low-cost carrier Vueling, launched Level earlier this year.
IAG’s share price has been subdued in today’s session, having lost 0.61 percent to 622.66p as of 10:27 BST, underperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index currently standing 0.33 percent lower at 7,531.36 points. The group’s shares have added more than 67 percent to their value over the past year, and are up by some 41 percent in the year-to-date.
Reuters quoted IAG’s chief executive Willie Walsh as telling the CAPA Global Summit in London that Level, which launched in Barcelona this year, will operate five aircraft next year, with two or three of those to be flown from outside of the Spanish city. He noted that the airline would get a further three to five aircraft in 2019. Walsh also added that the low-cost carrier will grow at a rate that is financially sustainable.
IAG launched Level in June, as it looks to compete with low-cost transatlantic carries such as Wow Air and Norwegian. The new airline currently flies from Barcelona to Los Angeles, San Francisco (Oakland), Buenos Aires and Punta Cana.
Analysts on IAG
In analyst ratings, HSBC Holdings, which sees IAG as a ‘sell,’ set a price target of 550p on the shares yesterday. According to MarketBeat, the British Airways parent currently has a consensus ‘hold’ rating and an average price target of 523.95p. IAG is scheduled to update investors on its third-quarter performance on October 27.