Germany’s Fraport CFO, Matthias Zieschang, stated the company is looking for possible acquisitions in mature markets (Reuters, 19-Jun-2010). Mr Zieschang stated that prior to the global financial downturn, Fraport was unable to enter markets in developed countries as prices were high, focussing instead on emerging markets. However, the situation is now different, with infrastructure prices significantly down. Before the downturn, prices for airports were valued at 25-times EBITDA but are now 10-times EBITDA. Fraport also now has liquid assets as money planned for expansion could be temporarily used for acquisitions. The airport owner’s available cash stands at EUR2.6 billion.
Fraport looking for acquisitions in mature markets
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Ryanair's Frankfurt move puts pressure on Lufthansa and supports its German growth ambitions
Ryanair and Fraport announced on 2-Nov-2016 that the Irish ultra-LCC will open its 85th base at Frankfurt Airport, Lufthansa's main hub. Ryanair will base two aircraft at the airport and launch four new leisure routes in Mar-2017. With a daily departure to each of Alicante, Faro, Malaga and Palma de Mallorca, it expects to attract 400,000 passengers pa.
Although Ryanair has been increasing its primary airport presence for some time, CEO Michael O'Leary had previously said that Frankfurt Airport was one of the few, alongside London Heathrow and Paris CDG, that Ryanair would not serve. Frankfurt was seen not only as too expensive, but also as too congested for Ryanair's short turnaround times. Details of Ryanair's agreement with Frankfurt Airport have not been disclosed, but it is likely that the airline has secured favourable terms in return for traffic growth targets.
Ryanair's move into Frankfurt is relatively small compared with its operations in Berlin Schoenefeld and Cologne/Bonn, but this development supports its growth ambitions in Germany. Ryanair's average revenue per passenger is half that of Lufthansa's network airlines. Its move increases the competitive pressure on Germany's national airline.
Global Airport Development Conference 2016 report: Trump, Brexit, pipelines and PPPs. Part 1
The Global Airport Development (GAD World) conference was held in Lisbon, between 29-Nov and 01-Dec-2016. This CAPA report chronicles the presentations and debates that took place on the first two days, including selected ‘stream’ sessions on both days.
There was, inevitably, a political overlay to the event, with the (Jun-2016) UK referendum on continuing membership of the European Union (‘Brexit’), the (Nov-2016) election of President Trump in the US and associated ‘uncertainty’ dominating events.
Otherwise, the concern was, as always, the ‘pipeline’ of airport privatisation details, or rather the lack of them, while the hope was for the continuation of the trend towards PPP deals.