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Old 11-05-2009, 07:17 PM
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Default GVK Power acquires 12% in BIAL

GVK Power & Infrastructure Ltd (GVKPIL), the Rs 2,000-crore Hyderabad-based company, has acquired 12 per cent in Bangalore International Airport Ltd for Rs 485 crore from Flughafen Zurich AG through GVK Airport Developers Pvt Ltd (GVKADPL), a wholly-owned subsidiary of GVKPIL.


This is GVK’s second foray into an airport project in India. It is also involved in modernisation of the Mumbai airport. The acquisition would be completed on obtaining the necessary consents. The company has also entered into a Strategic Alliance Agreement (SAA) with Unique Airports Worldwide AG (Zurich Airport) to collaborate for new airport projects in the Indian sub-continent.


Flughafen Zurich AG, the operator of the Zurich airport in Switzerland, held 17 per cent stake in Bangalore International Airport. It has diluted its stake to fund further growth in India. Zurich Airport, during its formal offer to offload its 12 per cent stake, expected to sell it for about $97.4 million (Rs 448 crore) before taxes. Zurich AG will keep a five per cent stake and will have board representation. Zurich Airport was among the first few global airport operators to participate in the airport privatisation process in India as operator and co-investor for a greenfield airport in Bangalore. In May 2008, the airport began its operations.


The airport was built at a cost of Rs 2,470 crore. Private partners Siemens Project Ventures, L&T and Zurich Airport held a 40:17:17 per cent share in BIAL, respectively, before Zurich pared its stake. The Airports Authority of India and Karnataka government’s KSIIDC are the minority partners, with 13 per cent share each.


GVKPIL CFO Issac George said the company raised Rs 720 crore in June in qualified institutional placements and would divert Rs 485 crore for the Bangalore International Airport. It is investing the remaining amount downstream, particularly in power plants.


Standard Chartered Bank was the advisor to GVK on this transaction. “We have made an entry. We will certainly look at the stake sales by other partners,” he said, adding there would be some opportunities for the company to increase its stake from 12 per cent.


Company officials said if required they would raise debt to hike their stake in the firm. “The Bangalore airport is a strategic fit for GVK, as there are not many big airports coming up,” the official added. The airport, initially built to handle 5 million passengers, was now handling 9.8 million and the rush was bound to increase further. He added the spend per passenger at Bangalore airport was higher.
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