Air Canada, TD, CIBC, and Visa are set to take over ownership of Aeroplan from its parent company Aimia, according to a statement released Tuesday.
The announcement comes less than a month after Aimia rejected a $325 million collective bid from the companies, on the grounds that the offer was too small. Aimia had wanted $450 million — and got exactly that on Tuesday when the companies upped their offer.
What will this mean for Aeroplan members? While the change in ownership is still underway, Air Canada, one of Aeroplan’s most high-profile partners, is framing the move as a beneficial one. In 2017, the airline had announced that it would be cutting ties with Aeroplan come 2020 and launching its own in-house loyalty program.
Aeroplan members were previously told that they would only have until June 29, 2020 to earn miles via Air Canada flights. But, that may no longer be the case once Air Canada owns Aeroplan.
“This transaction, if completed, should produce the best outcome for all stakeholders, including Aeroplan Members, as it would allow for a smooth transition to Air Canada's new loyalty program launching in 2020, safeguarding their miles and providing convenience and value for millions of Canadians,” said Air Canada president and CEO Calin Rovinescu.
Beyond Air Canada, it’s too early to say what the change in ownership will mean for Aeroplan’s other partnerships, which include Costco, Fairmont, and Toyota.
Since Air Canada decided to cut ties with Aeroplan last spring, the loyalty program has seen a number of partnership changes. In March, gas station chain Esso dropped Aeroplan in favour of PC Optimum, rousing concerns about the loyalty program’s future.
But, in recent months, the company seemed to be making a comeback, adding Porter, Olympic Air, and Amazon to its roster of partnerships.