MEIF looks into selling Bristol airport stake

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MEIF looks into selling Bristol airport stake

Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund (MEIF), a fund managed by Macquarieis believed to be looking to sell its 50 per cent stake in Bristol airport, the ninth-busiest airport in the UK

Canada's Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan could be the buyer as it already owns a 49 % stake and the pension fund has the right of first offer for the 50-percent stake owned by MEIFSydney Airport holds the remaining 1 percent.

According to Reuters, Deborah Allan, the pension fund's spokeswoman, said in an email to Reuters:

"We plan to increase our ownership, and in fact, we feel that we are the right buyer, given our history and expertise. Bristol Airport is an asset in which we already hold a significant stake, so we know and understand it well." 

MEIF first bought Bristol Airport from FirstGroup and Bristol City Council in 2001 for £198 million, together with Cintra - Ferrovial. Later, MEIF also bought Ferrovial's stake in 2006.

Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan had acquired a stake in Bristol Airport from Macquarie for £128 million, in 2009, and had also bought its stake in Birmingham Airport from Macquarie for £420 million in 2007.

The deal could be worth between £200 million to £250 million, according to sources.

Traffic in Bristol Airport increased to 6.1 million in 2013, a 3.4 % increase on passenger numbers in 2012. according to sources, it is the only UK airport in the UK's top ten airports to have passenger growth each year since the end of 2009.

The €1.5 billion MEIF is coming to the end of its life cycle, so Macquarie will either have to sell its assets or seek permission from investors to roll them over into its second, third our fourth MEIF funds.

In July, we also announced that MEIF sold its holding in Sweden's Arlanda Express high-speed rail service.

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