- Thomson Reuters
Qatar Airways has scrapped its plans to buy an equity stake in American Airlines.
“Further review of the proposed financial investment, taking into account the latest public disclosure of American Airlines, has demonstrated that the investment no longer meets our objectives,” the airline said in a statement on Wednesday.
“Qatar Airways will continue to investigate alternative investment opportunities in the United States of America and elsewhere that do meet our objectives.”
In a statement to Business Insider, American Airlines wrote:
“We respect Qatar Airways’ decision not to proceed with its proposed investment in American Airlines. This in no way changes the course for American. Our 120,000 team members remain energized and focused on taking care of those who entrust us with their travel needs. We couldn’t be more excited to keep our focus on that mission.”
It was a decision to that was met with hostility from American and its employees.
American Airlines CEO Doug Parker called the news “puzzling, at best and concerning, at worst” while assuring his team that Qatar Airways won’t be able to affect the company’s operation and strategy in a letter to employees obtained by Business Insider in June. “While anyone can purchase our shares in the open market, we aren’t particularly excited about Qatar’s outreach, and we find it puzzling given our extremely public stance on the illegal subsidies that Qatar, Emirates, and Etihad have all received over the years from their governments,” Parker wrote.
Qatar Airways, a long time American partner through their mutual membership in the Oneworld airline alliance, had always stressed that its investment would be passive and that it had no wish to participate in the airline’s management.
The Doha, Qatar-based carrier has a history of making high profile equity investments, including a 20% stake in IAG, the parent company of British Airways.