Agence des participations de l'État (APE), a vehicle of the Government of France managing the state's holdings in several firms, has hired HSBC and Mediobanca as consultants for two airport privatization processes.
Specifically, HSBC will manage the privatization process for the Lyon-Saint-Exupéry Airport, while Mediobanca will advise the government on the privatization process for the Nice Côte d'Azur Airport.
According to sources, Ferrovial, Atlantia, Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP), Malaysia Airport, Ontario Teachers Pension Plan and the sovereign funds of Singapore and Abu Dhabi, are among the potential bidders for the airports. The selected buyer is expected to be announced by early 2016.
Lyon-Saint-Exupéry Airport is the international airport of Lyon, the third-biggest city in France and an important transport facility for the entire Rhône-Alpes region. It lies in Colombier-Saugnieu, 20 km east southeast of Lyon city centre. The airport consists of three terminals and two runways aligned north-south. The airport has 18 jetways in all three terminals. Terminal 3 is used by low-cost airlines and has very basic facilities.
In 2013, the airport served 8.56 million passengers, an increase of 1.3% over the previous year. Air freight increased by 22.7% to 44,820 tonnes, although overall aircraft movements dropped by 2.8% to 113,420.
Nice Côte d'Azur Airport is an international airport located 5.9 km southwest of Nice, in the Alpes-Maritimes départment of France. It is the third busiest airport in France and serves as a focus city for Air France and an operating base for easyJet. The airport is positioned 7 km west of the city center, and is the principal port of arrival for passengers to the Côte d'Azur. Due to its proximity to the Principality of Monaco, it also serves as the city-state's airport, with helicopter service linking the principality and airport.
In 2013, it handled 11.55 million passengers. The airport's theoretical capacity is 13 million passengers and 52 movements (26 landings) per hour.