Virgin Atlantic receives several tie-up offers
* Enquiries received after hiring Deutsche Bank for review
* U.S. carrier Delta makes approach, says UK media
By Golnar Motevalli
LONDON, Dec 15 (Reuters) - British airline Virgin Atlantic [VA.UL] on Wednesday said it had received several "lines of enquiry" about tie-ups with rival carriers after it hired Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE) to assess the aviation market.
"Following Deutsche Bank's recent appointment, we have received a number of lines of enquiry but it is far too early to comment on individual details," Virgin said in a statement.
"We expect Deutsche Bank's work to run on for a number of months but have nothing further to add at this stage."
A Virgin Atlantic spokesman declined to comment further.
Britain's Sky News reported that Richard Branson's Virgin Atlantic had received a "string of approaches" from rivals including U.S. carrier Delta (DAL.N) airlines.
Faced with mounting competition from low-cost, no-frills upstarts, the notoriously low-margin airline industry has been going through a period of rapid consolidation and analysts believe larger carriers such as Virgin Atlantic now need partners to stay ahead of the competition. [ID:nN28155193]
A merger between British Airways BAY.L and Spain's Iberia IBLA.MC was last month given the stamp of approval by shareholders, opening the door to their plans to buy up other players in the airline sector.
In September, BA, Iberia and AMR Corp's AMR.N American Airlines signed off on a long-awaited strategic alliance that will see them cooperate on flights between Europe and North America. [ID:nLDE68S07H]
(Editing by Rhys Jones)
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