Edinburgh airport to be sold

 

Airport operator BAA is to sell Edinburgh airport, the Spanish-owned company announced today.

BAA, which operates six UK airports, had been ordered by the Competition Commission (CC) to sell either Edinburgh or Glasgow airport.



BAA said today it had decided that Edinburgh would be the one to be sold and that - if all goes well - the sale will be agreed by next summer.









After a long inquiry, which has led to numerous legal challenges, the CC found that BAA's ownership of UK airports was anti-competitive and ordered the company to sell Gatwick, Stansted and one of either Glasgow or Edinburgh.



Gatwick has already been sold to an American concern and BAA is still disputing the Stansted decision.



BAA, which also operates Heathrow, Southampton and Aberdeen airports, said today: "We are now commencing preparations for a sale (of Edinburgh) and expect to formally approach the market in the new year with a view to agreeing a sale by summer 2012.



BAA chief executive Colin Matthews added: "Edinburgh is a great airport with a great team and a great future and we will be very sorry to see it leave BAA.



"We remain committed to Scotland and we will continue our long-term investment to improve passenger and airline experience at Aberdeen and Glasgow, as well as at Edinburgh until the sale is complete."



He went on: "Choosing which airport to sell has been a difficult decision. Edinburgh Airport has shown itself to be a strong and resilient asset throughout the economic downturn.



"Passenger numbers at Edinburgh have grown by more than 6% over the past year and in an uncertain market we expect it to be an attractive asset to prospective buyers.



"Glasgow Airport has great opportunities for future growth and development and we think BAA is well-placed to build on its recent success. Both airports are of national importance and have a bright future."









Edinburgh is Scotland's largest airport, handling more than nine million passengers a year and more than 100,000 flights.



Passenger numbers have grown by 6.1% over the past 12 months and by 9.5% since the start of 2011. Around 40 airlines connect Edinburgh to more than 120 destinations. The airport is also a burgeoning cargo hub with 10,200 tonnes of cargo in the past year.



Edinburgh directly employs 485 staff and supports 7,500 jobs across Scotland.



BAA made a £42 million investment in 2010 in the departure lounge and security hall.









Jim O'Sullivan, managing director of Edinburgh Airport, said: "Today's announcement brings the clarification that many had been calling for and although we will be sorry to leave BAA, we do so in the knowledge we are in an extremely strong and healthy position.



"Not only has Edinburgh Airport benefited from considerable investment in recent years but we have an excellent team in place which has been the driving force behind our success to date.



"We will now begin preparing for the sale process, but irrespective of who may own it, the team at Edinburgh Airport will undoubtedly continue to deliver for its passengers, the city and Scotland as a whole."



Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: "Clearly we welcome today's announcement as it marks the end of what has been a prolonged period of uncertainty. Now a final decision has been reached we can concentrate our efforts on ensuring Glasgow Airport, as part of BAA, continues to deliver for its passengers, the city and Scotland as a whole."

PA

The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Oracle 11g SQL 2008 DBA (Unix, Oracle RAC, Mirroring, Replicati

    £6000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: Oracle 11...

    Recruitment Consultant (Graduate Trainee), Finchley Central

    £17K OTE £30K: Charter Selection: Highly successful and innovative specialist...

    SQL DBA/ C# Developer - T-SQL, C#.Net

    £45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Working with an exciting ...

    Sales and Office Administrator – Sports Media

    £23,000: Sauce Recruitment: A global leader in sports and entertainment is now...

    Day In a Page

    Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

    We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

    Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
    Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

    Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

    Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
    Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

    The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

    Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
    Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

    'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

    Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
    7 best quadcopters and drones

    Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

    From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
    Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

    Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

    British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
    Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

    A descent into madness in America's heartlands

    David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
    BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

    BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

    Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
    Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

    Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

    Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
    Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

    Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

    But could his predictions of war do the same?
    Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

    'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

    Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
    Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

    Young at hort

    Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
    Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

    Beyond a joke

    Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
    The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

    The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

    Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
    Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

    A wild night out

    Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve