Sydney Airport agrees to buyout

Sydney Airport
(PHOTO: Shutterstock)

Sydney Airport Holdings announced today (8 November) that it has agreed to accept a A$23.6 billion (US$17.46 billion) takeover bid from an infrastructure investor group in one of Australia’s biggest ever buyouts. The board of country’s biggest airport said in a statement that it unanimously recommended the buyout offer from Sydney Aviation Alliance (SAA), comprised of Australian investors IFM Investors, QSuper and AustralianSuper and U.S.-based Global Infrastructure Partners, according to a Reuters report.

“The Sydney Airport Boards believe the outcome reflects appropriate long-term value for the airport, and unanimously recommend the proposal to securityholders,” Chairman David Gonski said.

Download the airport’s stock exchange filing here.

A scheme implementation deed had been made on Monday and a scheme meeting would take place in January, the company said. The deal to buy Australia’s only listed airport operator comes as the country this month eased its international border restrictions for the first since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. It follows a sweetened offer by SAA of A$8.75 a share in September, 3.6 percent higher than its first approach, that convinced the company’s board to give the consortium access to due diligence.

The deal is conditional on an independent expert’s report, approval from 75 percent of the airport operator’s shareholders and a green light from the competition regulator and the Foreign Investment Review Board.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is investigating the transaction’s impact on competition, including the impact of the consortium’s ownership of multiple airports in the country. It is due to release its findings on 16 December.

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