S Korea's Jeju Air to acquire 51% stake in Eastar Jet for $59m

A Jeju Air flight. Photo: Jeju Air

South Korean budget airline Jeju Air Co Ltd signed a preliminary deal to buy a 51% stake in unlisted low-cost carrier Eastar Jet Co for about 69.5 billion won ($58.93 million), Jeju Air and its parent AK Holdings said on Wednesday.

The deal shows consolidation is underway in South Korea’s crowded budget carrier space as travel demand is falling to the key Japan market due to a diplomatic row between the two neighboring countries, hitting profitability of airlines.

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