Blackpool airport (losing about £1.5 million per year) put up for sale by Balfour Beatty
Blackpool Airport has been put up for sale by Balfour Beatty, which bought it in May 2008. The airport is saying the sale will not affect flights, and it hopes to get new routes. Balfour Beatty paid £14m for the airport, and has now has decided to sell its operating interests in the site as part of a wider decision to sell all its interests in regional airports. But it will continue to own the land on which the terminal stands. Alan Cavill, assistant chief executive at Blackpool Council, which sold the airport in 2004 for £13 million, welcomed the news. A London-based restructuring specialist is handling handle the sale and inviting expressions of interest from would-be buyers before September 10th, but no price has been put on the airport. Balfour Beatty has invested almost £30m in the site since 2008. But passenger numbers have dropped over the years from a peak of around 500,000 in 2007. It gets passengers from the North West of England, Southern Scotland, Cumbria and Cheshire. The airport makes an annual loss of about £1.5m per year. Three airlines are based at Blackpool including Jet2 with 13 destinations.
Investors sought for airport future
30.8.2014 (The Gazette)
Hopes are high a new owner will be found for Blackpool Airport who will invest in the future of the air hub.
As revealed in yesterday’s Gazette, Balfour Beatty has put the Squires Gate terminal up for sale as part of a wider decision to sell all its interests in regional airports.
Simon Menzies, managing director of aircraft charter firm Pool Aviation based at Blackpool Airport, said his company expected to play a part in encouraging a new investor.
He said: “The oldest airport in the UK actually has one of the brightest futures, with its established infrastructure, loyal customer base, highly trained specialist staff along with strong support from its established tenants, partners and passengers.
“We look forward to working with all parties, saving jobs, while protecting and developing one of the most special and historic airfields in the UK.
“This is at the same time as delivering a strong sustainable asset to all the people in the North West of England, Southern Scotland, Cumbria and Cheshire who have chosen Blackpool as their favourite and most friendly airport.”
Chris Mustow, of Air Ads, also based at the airport, said: “We will have to see what happens, but we would like to see an operator come on board who will put aviation at the core of everything they do.”
Around 100 workers are directly employed by the airport, but it is not yet known how jobs could be affected by the sale.
In a written reply to workers’ questions about possible job losses seen by The Gazette, airport bosses say it is too soon to comment, adding “the size and shape of the company would be determined by the new owners.”
Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden said: “This is a vital part of the infrastructure for Blackpool and the Fylde. We need to keep it as a vibrant airport and I look forward to a far more thorough and detailed briefing on how they intend to take this forward.”
Passengers using Blackpool airport:
2006 – 553
2007 – 558
2008 – 439
2009 – 277
2010 – 235
2011 – 236
2012 – 235
2013 – 263
Passengers using Liverpool airport:
2006 – 4,962
2007 – 5,463
2008 – 5,330
2009 – 4,879
2010 – 5,008
2011 – 5,247
2012 – 4,459
2013 – 4,186
Blackpool Airport sell-off bid sparks new route hopes
Going concern: Balfour Beatty is selling off its operating interests in Blackpool Airport. Council boss Alan Cavill has raised hopes the move could bring new operators to the terminal
29 August 2014 (The Gazette)
Blackpool Airport has been put up for sale – with hopes raised the move could bring even more new routes to the resort.
And bosses at the Squires Gate terminal today reassured passengers the sell-off would not affect flights.
Balfour Beatty, which bought the airport in 2008 for £14m, has decided to sell its operating interests in the site as part of a wider decision to sell all its interests in regional airports.
But it will continue to own the land on which the terminal stands. A statement issued by Blackpool Airport Ltd, the operating arm of Balfour Beatty at Squires Gate, said: “The directors of Blackpool Airport Limited have today commenced a process to sell the operating company of the airport.
“Services and flights to and from the airport will continue as normal during this sale process.”
Alan Cavill, assistant chief executive at Blackpool Council, which sold the airport in 2004, welcomed the news, saying it could bring new flights and operators to the Fylde coast.
London-based restructuring specialist Zolfo Cooper has been appointed to handle the sale and is inviting expressions of interest from would-be buyers before September 10.
A spokesman said: “We are pleased to have been appointed to this role and we will be working closely now with the management team of the airport to identify and evaluate appropriate expressions of interest.”
No price has been put on the airport.
Blackpool Airport Limited generates its income from aviation traffic, shopping, snack bar and other passenger facilities.
Blackpool Council sold the airport in a £13m deal in 2004 and, at the time, retained a five per cent stake.
Balfour Beatty has invested almost £30m in the site since it took it over.
But passenger numbers have dropped over the years from a peak of around 500,000 in 2007, and the terminal has continued to make an annual loss, currently running at about £1.5m a year.
Three airlines are based at Blackpool Airport including Jet2 which flies to 13 destinations.
Alan Cavill, assistant chief executive at Blackpool Council, said the council had been aware Balfour Beatty wanted to sell the terminal.
He added: “We await the outcome with interest.
“We hope a new owner could bring additional flights and operations to the airport which would be good for the Fylde Coast and the airport.”