Delta has emerged as a possible buyer of a 49 percent stake in the British airline Virgin Atlantic.
Singapore Airlines has confirmed it is in talks with interested parties to sell its holding in Virgin.
Delta – which is the second biggest US airline in terms of operating revenue – is reportedly keen to gain access to Virgin’s landing rights at London’s Heathrow airport.
To meet EU ownership rules Delta may join up with Air France-KLM which could also take a small stake in Virgin.
The European Union requires that EU carriers be under European control. Virgin’s British founder, Richard Branson, owns 51 percent of the airline. If Air France-KLM were to buy a small percentage of Branson’s stake, then Virgin could continue to be European controlled.
Delta has been looking to acquire a Virgin stake for more than two years but previous talks broke down over price and other issues, and there is no guarantee that its recent discussions would result in a pact, according to two people familiar with the matter.
Singapore Airlines also cautioned that the discussions might not result in a deal.