Ferrovial in new deal to cut its stake in Heathrow Airport Holdings to 20%

Spain’s Ferrovial has signed a new shareholders’ pact in Heathrow Airport Holdings that opens the door for the infrastructure firm to cut its stake to 20%.  The new agreement follows the purchase of stakes in Heathrow, formerly known as BAA, by Qatari and Chinese funds, as Ferrovial has sold 16% of its stake over the past year to reduce its holding to 34%.  It owned 55.9% of BAA in January 2011. According to Espirito Santo Investment Bank, Ferrovial must keep a stake of at least 25% for now and at least 20% from 2019, when a £600 million credit line matures. 

 



 

Ferrovial’s Heathrow pact opens door to new investments

MADRID | Thu Nov 22, 2012 (Reuters)

Spain’s Ferrovial  has signed a new shareholders’ pact in Heathrow Airport Holdings that opens the door for the infrastructure firm to cut its stake to 20 percent, a company official said on Thursday.

The new agreement follows the purchase of stakes in Heathrow, formerly known as BAA, by Qatari and Chinese funds, as Ferrovial has sold 16 percent of its stake over the past year to reduce its holding to 34 percent.

The new shareholders’ pact allows Ferrovial to sell further stakes in the airport group without offering its partners the option to sell their shares as well, and could pave the way for existing investors to up their stakes or for new investors to buy into the operator.

According to Espirito Santo Investment Bank, Ferrovial must keep a stake of at least 25 percent for now and at least 20 percent from 2019, when a 600 million pound credit line matures.

If Ferrovial’s stake dropped below 20 percent, the buyer would have to make an offer for 100 percent of Heathrow.

“This may raise hopes that Ferrovial could continue to sell down stakes in Heathrow, which we think is value-enhancing if the price is similar to recent transactions,” Espirito Santo said in a research note.

Ferrovial, which has been on a debt-cutting drive, has said it may use the proceeds from the sale of Heathrow stakes for investments or dividends. The company is expected to decide its dividend payout at the end of November.

For now, a Ferrovial official said the company was comfortable with its stake in Heathrow, in line with its goal to be the airport group’s main shareholder and industrial partner.

(Reporting By Tracy Rucinski; Editing by Helen Massy-Beresford)

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/11/22/uk-ferrovial-pact-idUKBRE8AL0CS20121122

 

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See earlier:

 

Qatar sovereign wealth fund buys 20% stake in BAA leaving Ferrovial 40%

August 22, 2012      Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund is buying 20% of BAA, adding it to a portfolio of British interests including stakes in Harrods, Barclays and J Sainsbury. Ferrovial will sell a 10.6% stake to Qatar Holding. At the same time two more shareholders have sold shares representing 9.4% of the business to the fund, leaving it with a 20% investment in BAA. The total value of the transaction is £900m. Qatar Holding is funded by proceeds from the world’s third largest gas reserves and wants more investment in the UK. This represents further retrenchment by Ferrovial from one of the UK’s most bruising foreign takeovers, although it denied that it is seeking a full exit from BAA. Ferrovial shareholding in BAA will be less than 40% once the Qatar deal is completed, while it owned 55% in 2010. BAA still has almost £11 billion debt.     Click here to view full story…


 

Ferrovial in move to cut its stake in BAA by 10%

14.1.2011    Ferrovial is in talks with investors to offload 10% of BAA in a move to slash €20.5 billion of debt.  Ferrovial owns 55.9% of BAA, and by dropping its holding below 50%, the Spanish firm will no longer need to consolidate BAA’s debt of about €14bn on its balance sheet. Ferrovial will seek offers for the stake – estimated last year to be worth about €200 million – during the final week of January, with the aim of clinching a deal by June. .(Scotsman)    http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=2745