Struggling Norwegian Air gets a lift from bank stake sale2019|01:09
Norwegian Air has agreed to sell its stake in banking company Norwegian Finans Holding for 2.22 billion crowns - that's around 246.7 million US doillars. It's a boost for the loss-making airline's finances and sent its shares sharply higher on Monday. The deal will boost Norwegian Air's cash holdings by 934 million crowns, And lead to an accounting gain of 196 million. The European aviation sector has been struggling with overcapacity, leading some airlines to offer loss-making fares and a few smaller carriers, like Iceland's WOW air, to go bust. Norwegian late last year set out plans to slash costs and focus on short-term profitability over long-term growth But' it's been hampered by the worldwide grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, of which the company has 18 in its fleet. The airline's earnings per passenger rose during the important early summer months. Yet the increase was smaller than most analysts had anticipated - and Norwegian's share price took a hit.