Stansted Airport Up For Sale As BAA Loses Appeal Bid
Airport operator BAA may have to sell Stansted after it lost an appeal against a Competition Commission ruling on Wednesday morning.
The Commission ruled in 2009 that the company, which owns seven airports, would have to sell Gatwick, Stansted and one of its two Scottish locations in Glasgow or Edinburgh.
Global Infrastructure Partners, an investment fund, paid £1,46bn through a subsidiary, Ivy Bidco, for Gatwick in October 2009, and in October, BAA began the process of selling Edinburgh Airport, with private equity bidders rumoured to be interested in a sale that could raise between £700m and £1bn.
In its original ruling, the Competition Commission said that BAA, which is majority owned by the Spanish group Ferrovial, had a dominant position in the market which was detrimental to customers.
In an emailed statement, a BAA spokesperson said: “We are disappointed by the decision of the Competition Appeal Tribunal which we will now carefully consider before making any further statements.”
Laura Carstensen, chairman of the BAA Remedies Implementation Group and a member of the original inquiry group which produced the report in 2009, said in an email: "We are very pleased that our decision has been upheld. Whilst BAA is of course entitled to explore the available avenues for challenge, it is now surely time for BAA to accept our findings and proceed with the necessary divestments.
"BAA is in the process of selling Edinburgh airport following our ruling. We will now press ahead to ensure that this is followed promptly by the sale of Stansted airport, to the benefit of passengers and airlines."