Groupe Aéroports de Paris Acquires Controlling Stake in Airport International Group

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Amman, April 2018 – On Thursday 19 April, 2018 Airport International Group and international airport operator, Groupe Aéroports de Paris (ADP) have announced a new acquisition deal whereby Groupe ADP has acquired a majority stake of 51 percent. The announcement came during a press conference, which involved a tour of the airport, held at Queen Alia International Airport (QAIA), in the presence of Jordanian Minister of Transport and Municipal Affairs H.E. Eng. Walid Masri; H.E. Muhannad Shehadeh, Jordanian Minister of State for Investment Affairs and Chairman of the Jordan Investment Commission (JIC); Groupe ADP Chairman and CEO, Augustin de Romanet; ADP International Chief International Officer and the new chairman of Airport International Group, Fernando Echegaray; Airport International Group CEO, Kjeld Binger, and several representatives of the local and international media.

Groupe ADP, which offers expertise in international airport investment and operation, with airports such as Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport among its enterprises, have owned a 9.5 percent stake in Airport International Group via a subsidiary since 2007, when Airport International Group was awarded a 25-year Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) concession agreement to rehabilitate, expand and operate Queen Alia International Airport through a USD 850 million public-private partnership (PPP) plan. With this acquisition, Groupe ADP now owns 51%, with the remaining shares distributed among Meridiam Eastern Europe Investments – 32%, Mena Airport Holding Ltd. – 12.25% and Edgo Investment Holdings Ltd. – 4.75%.

As Jordan’s prime gateway to the world, QAIA has made its presence known on the international stage with its high quality services, efficient operations and adherence to international standards, resulting in numerous international accolades including first place in both ‘Best Airport by Region: Middle East’ in 2014 and 2015 and ‘Best Airport by Size and Region: Middle East’ in 2016 in Airport Council International’s (ACI) Airport Service Quality (ASQ) surveys held each year, in addition to the Silver award in the ACI Asia-Pacific Green Airports Recognition 2017, to name a few. The entry of an investor such as Groupe ADP not only serves as a testament to the success achieved by Airport International Group, but also the success of a BOT PPP in the Middle East, while proving the capability of Jordan’s economy to establish and sustain a partnership in the transport sector.

Following the completion of the acquisition, and with their unparalleled experience, Groupe ADP will be implementing strategies in the near future to further enhance the services and traveler experience offered at QAIA, making it a true and solid contender in the aviation sector beyond the regional level. Its top priorities will be integrating QAIA routes into Groupe ADP’s broad network, managing extension and upgrading works and ensuring continuous advancement across all operations.

On this occasion, Minister of Transport and Municipal Affairs, H.E. Eng. Walid Masri, commented, “This project and other successful investment projects like it which are supported by His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein, has become a source of distinguished pride for Jordanians and our visitors alike. It is the result of cooperation and hard work, aided by support from all the official entities security bodies. It symbolizes an important milestone for the partnership between the public and private sector; a partnership between the Government of Jordan and the investor, Airport International Group, which has been lauded as one of the top 40 PPP’s in the world.”

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Investment Affairs and Chairman of the Jordan Investment Commision (JIC), H.E. Muhannad Shehadeh, said, “The Airport Project is a true implementation of His Majesty King Abdullah II ibn Al Hussein’s vision of actualizing a true partnership between the public and private sector. It has been 11 years since Jordan signed an agreement with Airport International Group to rehabilitate, expand and operate QAIA with local, regional and international experts in the field of building and operating airports. What we have today goes beyond a simple buy-and-sell agreement as it carries a strong message which states that the Kingdom has been able to prove once again, that it can be an investment destination and a trusted stronghold for the most important of foreign investments.” He added, “In 2017, the Kingdom witnessed a tangible increase of 19.3% in foreign investment, which ultimately benefits economic growth rates. The Government of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan looks forward to embarking on this path to success with our new partners, assuring them of the Government's keenness to support future investment initiatives.”

On behalf of Groupe ADP, Augustin de Romanet, said, “This new step is strategic for Groupe ADP as it serves to strengthen our ties with Jordan, and I extend my thanks to the Government of Jordan for its confidence and trust in us. Queen Alia International Airport is one of the best airports in the Middle East, and Groupe ADP, having already been a shareholder of Airport International Group through ADP International, has contributed to the superb performance and growth of the airport over the last ten years. By acquiring control of Airport International Group, Groupe ADP will be able to fully spread its limitless know-how, expertise and offerings. Alongside our co-shareholders, Meridiam Eastern Europe Investments and Edgo Investment Holdings Ltd., we aim to reinforce the routes network, departing from Amman, and improve the quality of service for passengers and the performance of aeronautical and retail activities, for the benefit of all stakeholders. Lastly, a big part of our goal is to ensure sustainable and socially responsible operations and the continuous development of the infrastructure for the remaining duration of the concession.”

In turn, Kjeld Binger, said, “In recent years, Jordan has been in the global spotlight, evoking the interest of foreign investors with its investment-friendly environment and policies, which in turn, contributes to the Kingdom’s economic growth. We are proud to be working with Groupe ADP, as they possess a repertoire of internationally acclaimed airports and worldwide experience in airport management. This step marks a pivotal moment in our journey with Queen Alia International Airport, as we aspire to build on the substantial success we have achieved thus far, and reach unprecedented levels of excellence and innovation in the years to come.”