Firms: Gilbert + Tobin (Virgin Australia and Western Australian airline Skywest)
Deal: Corporate Alliance authorisation, including application to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for authorisation
Key players: Competition partner Luke Woodward led the transaction, together with lawyers Louise Klamka and Wendy Thian.
Deal significance: The ACCC has issued its decision proposing to authorise the alliance, recognising that it will enhance competition in the Australian air travel market, particularly for corporate travel. The Corporate Alliance will particularly benefit companies and their employees in the. Final authorisation is expected in May 2012. “The alliance is another important element in Virgin Australia’s strategy to win a larger share of corporate customers and to challenge Qantas’ position in the market. We have worked closely with Virgin Australia to help them expand their global network through alliances with Singapore Airlines, Delta Airlines, Air New Zealand, and Etihad Airways. We are pleased to have been able to work with them again to help them achieve their strategic goals,” said Woodward.