Wizz Air's largest investor Indigo Partners sold about half its stake in the Hungary-based low cost airline to institutional investors, raising gross proceeds of around £400m. 

Private equity firm Indigo Partners did own 15 million shares or a 17.5% stake in Wizz Air prior to the disposal, which was first announced yesterday. 

The sale of 7.7 million shares will leave it with a stake of about 8.5%. 

Wizz Air, like most European airlines, is hoping that travel will properly restart in May after a year of lockdowns and restrictions, but rising case numbers in some parts of Europe now threaten to derail that recovery. 

In February, Wizz's passenger numbers were down 87% compared to the year earlier period, highlighting the scale of the travel slump. 

But cash-rich Wizz has weathered the pandemic better than many airlines, continuing to receive new planes, and saying it has the financial resources to survive even if flying does not pick-up this year. 

Its shares have risen 13% over the last three months on hopes for a travel restart.