UPDATE 1-Finnair sells Norwegian stake for 53 mln euros

Mon Apr 22, 2013 3:12am EDT

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HELSINKI, April 22 (Reuters) - Finnish flag carrier Finnair sold its 4.7 percent stake in Norwegian Air Shuttle for 53 million euros ($69 million) as it tries to concentrate resources on expanding profitable, long-haul routes.

Finnair said on Monday it would record a capital gain of 34 million euros on the deal in the second quarter.

The sale comes as Finnair tries to cut costs and raise money to buy new planes as part of its strategy to shift its focus to increasing long-haul flights to Asia.

Earlier this month, it hired Cargotec executive Pekka Vauramo as its new chief executive, to complete a turnaround started by his predecessor Mika Vehvilainen.

Shares in the low-cost Norwegian carrier were transferred to Finnair through a share swap, as part of Finnair's sale of its Swedish subsidiary FlyNordic to Norwegian. ($1 = 0.7644 euros) (Reporting by Ritsuko Ando; Editing by Mark Potter and David Holmes)

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