This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

The Deal: Ryanair Files Appeal Against Aer Lingus Selldown Order

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Dublin-based low-cost carrier Ryanair Holdings (RYAAY) on Tuesday, Sept. 24, appealed against the U.K. Competition Commission's ruling that it must slash its stake in domestic rival Aer Lingus Group.

The appeal comes a month after the Competition Commission ordered Ryanair to reduce its holding in Aer Lingus from 29.8% to 5%, amid concerns that Ryanair was in a position to interfere with Aer Lingus' commercial strategy and policy in several ways, including blocking Aer Lingus from being acquired by or combining with another carrier.

Ryanair's 29.8% stake is worth about 240.27 million euros ($324.2 million), based on Aer Lingus' market value of 805.74 million euros.

Its appeal in the U.K. also comes as its separate appeal remains pending against the European Commission's February veto of a hostile takeover bid for Aer Lingus, which is 25.1% owned by the Irish government.

In Tuesday's appeal to the U.K.'s Competition Appeal Tribunal, Ryanair argued that the Competition Commission was wrong to order a divestiture as long as Ryanair's appeal against the European Commission decision remained pending.

Ryanair, represented in the U.K. appeal by Nicholas Levy and Paul Gilbert of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, also argued that the U.K. Competition Commission's procedure was unfair because it was based on evidence and allegations kept secret from Ryanair.

"In particular, the Commission withheld evidence that it relies upon to establish that, absent Ryanair's minority shareholding, other airlines would have or would have in the foreseeable future entered into combinations with Aer Lingus," according to a summary of the appeal.

It further argued that the Commission failed to show a causal link between Ryanair gaining "material influence" over its rival's policy and the finding of a substantial lessening of competition.

Ryanair said the relief it is seeking will depend on the grounds on which its appeal is upheld, and suggested several scenarios, including canceling the divestiture order and canceling the Competition Commission's entire report.

The two airlines have been duking it out since Ryanair took a minority stake in October 2006, three days after Aer Lingus went public. Both appeals are likely to drag on for some time.

--Written by Renee Cordes in New York

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,943.81 +28.74 0.17%
S&P 500 1,967.57 +2.89 0.15%
NASDAQ 4,415.49 +19.2860 0.44%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs