IAG share price: Chief executive sees more room for US growth

on Mar 11, 2014
Updated: Apr 9, 2020
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iNVEZZ.com, Tuesday, March 11: (LON:AG) British Airways unit has more room to growth in the US, USA Today has reported, quoting the group’s chief executive. The carrier also sees a reshaped and emboldened partner in the new American Airlines Group Inc (NASDAQ:AAL) following the airline’s merger with US Airways last year.

IAG’s share price has added just under 1.3 percent in London so far this morning.
**IAG with more room for US growth**
IAG’s chief executive Willie Walsh yesterday told USA Today in an interview that there was still room for British Airways to grow in the US, noting that there were four cities in North America, including some in the US, which the carrier “would like to serve”. Walsh also said that the arrival of new Boeing 787 Dreamliners would allow the airline to “potentially add some more cities in the US” while cautioning that it could “be until 2015 before we do that”.

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Earlier this month, British Airways launched direct flights from London to Austin, with the service marking the first regular transatlantic flight to the capital of Texas. The airline said that the flight would be operated by a Boeing 787 Dreamliner five times a week, increasing to daily flights in May.
Walsh also commented on British Airways’ ties with American Airlines, noting that the US carrier was now a “very different” company following the merger with US Airways in December.

“I think the pace at which they’ll operate will be faster than it has been,” Walsh told USA Today. “We’ll have to adapt our performance to match that, as well, because I suspect they’ll be looking for faster decision-making.”
British Airways and American Airlines, along with IAG’s Spanish unit Iberia, operate as part of a joint venture on transatlantic flights.

Last week, IAG posted upbeat February traffic figures, reporting an 11.4 percent year-on-year increase in traffic measured in revenue passenger kilometres. (IAG share price: British Airways parent swings to profit in 2013)

**Analysts on IAG**
JPMorgan Chase & Co today reiterated its ‘overweight’ rating on IAG without specifying a price target, while analysts at Jefferies Group, which rate the British Airways parent as a ‘buy’, boosted their price target on the stock from 410p to 510p.
IAG currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating and an average price target of 545.75p.
**As of 09:15 UTC, buy IAG shares at 438.90p.**
**As of 09:15 UTC, sell IAG shares at 438.60p.**

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