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Ryanair agrees to acquire Niki Lauda's carrier

Ryanair Holdings PLC agreed to acquire up to 75% of Austrian airline LaudaMotion GmbH.

Ryanair will initially acquire a 24.9% stake in LaudaMotion and plans to raise its holding to 75%, subject to EU approval. The 75% investment will cost less than €50 million. Ryanair will provide an additional €50 million for startup and operating costs.

LaudaMotion is owned by former race car driver Niki Lauda and recently acquired the assets of the former Niki Airline. It plans to start scheduled and charter services from Germany, Austria and Switzerland primarily to Mediterranean leisure destinations. Niki Lauda will chair LaudaMotion's board and work on the strategy to build a low-fare airline.