FirstRand gets approval to acquire SLOW lounges from Kulula

The Competition Tribunal has approved a merger deal that would see FirstRand acquire SLOW Lounges in South Africa from Kulula owner Comair.

Kulula Air owns and operates the SLOW and SLOW XS branded airport lounges at OR Tambo International Airport, King Shaka International Airport, Cape Town International Airport and Lanseria International Airport.

The SLOW Lounges are airport lounges fitted, furnished and operated by Kulula Air with space rented from Airports Company South Africa.

Comair announced in August that it wanted to offload the SLOW lounges to FirstRand to raise capital as part of its business rescue process. The deal was subject to regulatory approvals, including the Competition Tribunal process, and an interim agreement was set up, which included a R250 million loan to the group from FirstRand.

The tribunal approved the merger without any conditions.

SLOW Lounges are already integrated into the FirstRand portfolio through its retail arm, First National Bank, as part of its eBucks rewards structure.

FNB Premier account holders and above (Private Clients, Private Wealth) are afforded access to SLOW lounges as part of their rewards packages. Complimentary access kicks in at reward tier 3, with two free entries in a year.

Paid entry into the lounge costs R250 for qualifying banking customers.

Read: Comair restarts Kulula and BA flights in South Africa – including new fares and routes

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FirstRand gets approval to acquire SLOW lounges from Kulula