GMR exits Istanbul airport

Published Dec 24, 2013, 2:38 pm IST
Updated Mar 19, 2019, 2:19 am IST


Hyderabad: GMR Infrastructure, the Bangalore-based infrastructure major, has agreed to sell its 40 per cent stake in Istanbul Sabiha Gokçen International Airport in Turkey to its joint venture partner Malaysia Airport Holdings for 225 million euros ($306 million or Rs 1896 crore).

According to Malaysian state-run news agency Bernama, Malaysia Airports has exercised its first right of refusal after GMR expressed its intention to sell its stake.

In the Istanbul airport, Turkey’s Limak Investment and GMR Group had a stake of 40 per cent each and the remaining 20 per cent was held by Malaysia Airports.

The group will use the sale proceeds to pare its debt and also for funding its power projects, said a GMR official.

According to Bloomberg, Sabiha Gokcen airport is the smaller of the two airports serving Turkey’s biggest city Istanbul, handling 14.7 million passengers in 2012 compared with 45 million travelers using TAV’s Ataturk Airport.

Turkey-based Limak, GMR and Malaysia Airports won operational rights to Sabiha Gokcen for 20 years from the Turkish government for 1.93 billion euros in 2007.

The exit from this airport marks GMR’s withdrawal from the overseas projects. It is also seen as part of the asset-light strategy to reduce its Rs 40,000 crore.

After its forced exit from Maldives airport, the group had sold its stake in Singapore-based power project for $125 million and its coal mines in South Africa for $50 million.

Earlier, Istanbul-based TAV, an affiliate of Aero-ports de Paris, was in talks with GMR to buy its stake. However, Malaysia Airports had asserted its right of first refusal to acquire the holding.



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