IAG, which owns British Airways, is proposing a bid of €2.55 per share, which values Aer Lingus at around €1.36bn (£1.02bn).
The Irish firm stated that its board was considering the bid, which is the third that IAG has made over the past few months. Aer Lingus also said the proposal remains conditional on, among other things, the receipt of irrevocable commitments from Ryanair and the Irish minister for finance to accept the offer.
Rival carrier Ryanair owns a 29.82 per cent stake in the company, while the Irish government owns a 25.11 per cent stake. The government is facing mounting political pressure not to sell.
Robin Byde, analyst at Cantor Fitzgerald, said he expected Ryanair to accept the latest offer, but that the government’s stake might become more of a problem.
He stated: “We are concerned about the politics of this deal and the potential for IAG to get dragged into prolonged and distracting negotiations.”