QIA to buy stake in Russian airport
aTP- Arab tourism portal News – Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) will acquire a total stake of 24.99 percent in the operating consortium of St. Petersburg airport in Russia.
An official statement received from Frankfurt yesterday announced Fraport AG Frankfurt Airport Services Worldwide (Fraport AG) and its consortium partners reached an agreement to sell a portion of their shares in Thalita Trading Ltd to Qatar Investment Authority and Fraport AG will reduce its equity share in Thalita Trading Ltd from 35.5 percent to 25 percent.Thalita Trading Ltd is the parent company of Northern Capital Gateway, which holds the concession to operate Pulkovo Airport in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Due to the sale by consortium partner Copelouzos Group, QIA will have its stake in the airport operating consortium, while Fraport AG will remain the lead operator following this transaction.
The transaction is subject to the approval of the Russian government and the senior project finance lenders. Fraport AG expects that these approvals will be granted and that the transaction closing will take place during the second half of 2016.“Depending on the further development of carrying amounts up until the closing of the transaction, the values may still vary. However, as of today Fraport AG AG expects a noticeable positive contribution from the closing of the total transaction.
”Despite the recent weakening traffic developments at some Group airports, particularly Frankfurt and Antalya, the Fraport AG Executive Board is maintaining its outlook-when taking account of the positive effects from the disposal of shares in St. Petersburg-for the full year 2016 ranges from Group EBITDA, Group EBIT, Group EBT, and the group result set at the beginning of the fiscal year.Reuters reported that Fraport is expecting to generate a gain of€30-€40m from the deal, which will help offset weakening revenues at hubs like Frankfurt and Antalya and allow it to confirm its 2016 earnings forecast.
Fraport saw its passenger numbers at its home base Frankfurt drop 1 percent in the first six months, while it was down 30 percent at its Turkish outlet Antalya following recent suicide bombings in the country.
The rouble weakness had thrown the operating company of St Petersburg airport, which had financed new terminal buildings in euros and dollars, into financial difficulties, forcing Fraport to help resolve the situation.