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Australian investors seek stake in Vienna airport

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Photo: APA (Archiv/Fohringer)
13:57 CEST+02:00
According to a report from Bloomberg, Australian fund IFM Investors Pty Ltd is seeking to acquire a half-billion Euro stake in Vienna Airport operator Flughafen Wien AG (FLU).

The deal is likely to be the biggest airport transaction of the year.  It is based on a valuation of €80 per share, which is 30 percent more than the latest closing price.  IFM is looking to buy up to 29.9 percent, worth a total of €502 million ($636 million).

Under Austrian equities laws, if an investor seeks more than 30 percent, they are required to make a bid for all of a company's outstanding shares.  The offer led to a rise in shares by 18 percent.

Bloomberg reports that assets related to airport operations usually offer a stable return for many decades, giving excellent long-term stability and better gains than today's bond markets.

Currently, the largest stakes in the airport belong to the City of Vienna and the province of Lower Austria, who each hold 20 percent, while an employee trust holds 10 percent.  These stakes are not for sale, meaning that other investors are the ones likely to consider the offer.

IFM already owns stakes in London's Stansted Airport, as well as holdings in Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide.

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