Sunday, May 11, 2014

China Southern in race for Ljubljana Airport

From East to West, strong interest for Ljubljana Airport

More than twenty companies have expressed interest to purchase a 75% stake in Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport. Among them are airlines, airports and pension funds, as well as investment groups specialising in restructuring companies for later sale. Among the interested parties is Asia’s busiest carrier, China Southern Airlines, as well as the Fraport Group, which manages Frankfurt Airport. Others who have expressed strong interest to bid for Slovenia’s busiest airport include Munich Airport, Zurich Airport, French engineering and consulting group Egis, French concession and construction company VINCI, as well as Italy’s SAVE which manages Venice Marco Polo Airport, Treviso Airport, Verona Airport and is the part operator of Charleroi Airport in Belgium.

The strong interest comes as Ljubljana Airport overturned its downward passenger trend last year by handling 1.321.100 passengers. The airport saw record numbers in 2008 when it welcomed 1.630.050 travellers but has been unable to improve on its results since. Trends so far this year have been encouraging. The airport has seen an almost 13% increase in passenger numbers in the first quarter. In addition, it reported a net profit of 857.000 euros during the first three months, up 5.4% year-on-year, as revenue rose almost 6% to 7.13 million euros. The airport is in talks with low cost airlines Wizz Air and easyJet to launch new flights to the Slovenian capital later this year. The CEO of Ljubljana Airport, Zmago Skobir, says, “We are in the final stages of talks with Wizz Air and easyJet on launching routes to northern Germany and maybe Scandinavia towards the end of the year".

The sale of Jože Pučnik Airport is expected to be finalised during the summer. Over the week, institutions in charge of overseeing the privatisation process of key Slovenian government-owned companies ensured both investors and the public that the pace of privatisations in the country will not be slowed following Prime Minister Alenka Bratušek’s resignation on Monday. A new owner will have to address the issue of constructing of a new terminal buidling. Late last year, the airport’s minority shareholders, which are mostly made up of banks, rejected plans for the construction of a new terminal, which was pitched by the state. Enrico Marchi, the CEO of Italy’s SAVE, says the company’s long term goal is to create a complex of interlinked airports in north-eastern Italy which could also include Ljubljana. It would prove as a replacement for Trieste Airport which is operated by another company. Furthermore, China Southern Airlines is considering purchasing a stake in Ljubljana Airport but also other sectors of the Slovenian aviation industry including Adria Airways and maintenance company Adria Airways Tehnika, which are also up for sale.

28 comments:

  1. Bye Bye Croatia Airlines and Congratulations Slovenia.

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    Replies
    1. It does not mean that Adria or LjU or Slovenia would be reborn, just like nothing happened with ZAG with its concession..

      Investing into the airline has bigger consequences than investing into the airport.

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    2. Good luck, Adria Airways! Croatia Airlines is not going bust, yet, we just have to be patient!

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  2. Hope to see soon new routes.

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  3. I don't know, to me, it seems like giving both Adria and the airport to the Chinese might be the best thing. Naturally this move doesn't come without great challenges or even risks but if there is a company that wants them both then why not give it to them? After all, it will make the government's life easier later on as they will not have to go through another privatization ordeal. China Southern is a decent carrier which has built a good network out of its hubs and maybe they could do the same in Slovenia. Naturally, it goes without saying that they could secure a cheap loan relatively easily from the Chinese investment banks.

    However, I am not too sure the European Union (read Germany and Lufthansa) would be too happy about this. If they do take them over then I guess Adria will be switching over to Sky Team and it will mean Lufthansa family will get another enemy at its doorstep.

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    Replies
    1. Once again BYE BYE Croatia Airlines here is another neighbouring airline getting safed and you still have nothing except you still have your rocket scientist Mr.Kucko good luck .See you around. Congratulations Slovenia

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    2. I agree, i hope China Southern buys Adria Airways and Ljubljana airport. It's true that the will take all the profit out of EU, but they can improve many other things from Slovenia. That would probably increase the tourism from China and if they plan on making LJU one of the European ''hubs'' it will bring a lot of pax to Adria as a feeder. I mean Fraport Group looks to me like they only want to get rid of another potential competitor in the future + make the Adria airways their slave.

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    3. Those were my first thoughts exactly when I saw Fraport was interested in the airport.

      As for the Chinese, I guess they can get a concession for the airport and a similar deal Etihad got for Jat Airways as far as Adria goes. Also, what's interesting is that China Southern has been mentioned as a potential investor for a few months now. That's kind of reassuring.

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    4. Ljubljana as a hub? Are you joking?

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    5. No one said that it has to be a hub the same way Frankfurt or Munich are but s small, regional hub.

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    6. Why joking? Why would an airline from the other side of the world buy a small airport like LJU. They are not competitors like Italy and Germany. Maybe i'm getting too excited here, it might not become some ultra busy international hub, but they definitely have plans with Ljubljana airport and Adria if they buy them.

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  4. And here is another thing to take into account ... by EU law you can bay 100% of infrastructure but only 49% of an airline carrier in case that the buyer is out of EU

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  5. Aren't there some rules in the EU that a same company can't buy an airline and airport?

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  6. if chinese manage to buy lju, expect scenes like these to be seen there as well :
    http://youtu.be/Vj3IsRMzVc

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  7. Ode OU u pokojnike.
    A YU,YM i JP ostaju.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ima jedna izreka : prvo skoci pa reci hop.
      A ima jos jedna : ko se zadnji smeje najsladje se smeje
      A ko je pametan razumece

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    2. Slažem se, Anonymous 5:03 PM, Hrvatska jednostavno ima neusporedivo veći potencijal od Slovenije i, ne zaboravite, veći broj putnika od svih bivših jugoslovenskih republika (6,3 milijuna u 2013.)... Nadam se najboljem za OU mada je sve moguće, a da me netko krivo ne shvati, želim samo najbolje i Adriji Airwaysu i Air Serbiji koja treba iskoristiti pruženu priliku da postane najjača u regiji!

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    3. Anonymous at 5:03 PM
      Vidi se da nemas veze sa avio industrijom .

      Delete
    4. @AnonymousMay 11, 2014 at 6:08 PM

      A ti imas, govoris gluposti i trolliras, tvoja mrznja svaga hrvatskog je evidentna svaki dan na ovom blogu.

      kaj nemas niceg boljeg da sljakas nek govorit gluposti iz dana u dan.

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  8. Yesterday first this year Korean 747-400 flight to Zagreb.

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    Replies
    1. There is a video on u tube

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    2. Pics:

      http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=534084&page=219

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  9. OT: Trade Air is operating the LJU -ZHR(JP306 / ADR33Z) route for Adria Airways today with their Fokker 100. Also a lot of flights were postponed at LJU (Moscow, Copenhagen..) and Adria's A320 and a CRJ 900 were flying out of Dublin together. Anybody knows what was going on?

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  10. Great news for Ljubljana Airport btw., more bidders will result in a higher acquisition price. I hope for China Southern as they are the only one with a genuine interest in making something larger out of LJU...the rest are just looking to have a steady profit making investment or to make sure the airport and Adria will still feed their own airports... eventually the Chinese will make a dragon shaped terminal - that would be something ;)

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  11. Sounds like some spinning.
    If China Southern were interested to have a dashboard in the exYu region they would have shown some interest in Zagreb and OU earlier.

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  12. Fraport will be the winner. Minister did not even want to have meeting with Chnina Southern.

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  13. This is because Slo and Cro are Lufthansa slaves.

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    Replies
    1. I'd rather be a Lufthansa slave than indebted and slave to Arabs.

      Serb hypocrisy of the worst kind.

      Delete

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