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Gatwick Airport owner Global Infrastructure Partners mulling £10bn sale

Private equity fund Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) is considering a sale of its stake in Gatwick Airport, it has been reported.

The US infrastructure specialist owns a 42 per cent stake in Gatwick, which The Sunday Times reports it could sell for £10bn.

Gatwick is the UKs second-largest airport after Heathrow and the ninth-largest airport in Europe.

Read more: Gatwick just announced it had a record-breaking 2017

There has been widespread speculation that GIP is planning on cashing in its stakes in both Gatwick and Edinburgh airports.

One industry figure said: “Everyone assumes GIP will sell out of Gatwick and Edinburgh.”

Airports operator BAA sold its stakes in Gatwick and Edinburgh to GIP in 2009 and 2012 respectively as part of a Competition Commission requirement to break up previously state-owned assets.

GIP acquired its stake in Gatwick in 2009 for £1.5bn and its stake in Edinburgh in 2012 for £807m.

In 2016 GIP sold its 75 per cent stake in Londons City airport for £2bn to a Canadian and Kuwaiti consortium, led by the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan and Borealis Infrastructure.

Read more: Canadians and Kuwaitis swoop in on City Airport

Separately Ardian, the owners of a 49 per cent stake in Luton airport, the UKs fifth biggest, is reported to have hired bankers Rothschild to explore a sale.

The French investment company bought its stake in Luton for €508m (£445m) in 2013 from Spanish motorway toll company Abertis.

A spokesperson for GIP said: “GIP does not comment on market rumour or speculation and this clearly is speculation.”

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