Infratil confirms Manston Airport sale

Last updated 12:02 02/12/2013

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Listed infrastructure company Infratil has confirmed it has sold Manston Airport in Kent to a British company for £1 (NZ$2) plus adjustments.

The sale, completed on November 29, was for a cash consideration of £1 plus an adjustment for working capital variances and cash injected by Infratil between October 14 and transaction completion, expected to be about £350,000.

The buyer, Manston Skyport is wholly owned by Scottish multimillionaire Ann Gloag.

Infratil chief executive Marko Bogoievski said in October that Gloag was an experienced investor who co-founded Stagecoach Group, the UK-listed public transport operator, with her brother, Brian Souter.

Souter, who still owns bus and ferry companies in New Zealand, sold New Zealand Bus to Infratil in 2005.

The Manston sale, along with the sale of Glasgow Prestwick Airport to the Scottish government last month, marks Infratil's exit from the UK airport business.

The sale was a "weight off Infratil's shoulders", Bogoievski said last month.

Infratil first bought into Prestwick in early 2001, when it led a consortium's purchase of 90 per cent of the airport for about $110 million.

Earlier this year Infratil had written down the value of both airports by $53m, to a residual combined worth of $21.2m. This followed a $26m write-down in 2012. The two airports had had a $101m book value in 2011.

Glasgow Prestwick was valued at $100m about 13 years ago.

Infratil first made clear its intention to sell the Prestwick and Manston airports in March last year.

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- Fairfax Media

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