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NEWS Last modified on October 15, 2014

Australian fund interested in buying stake in Flughafen Wien AG

Australian fund IFM Investors Pty Ltd plans to offer as much as €502 million for a minority stake in Vienna Airport operator Flughafen Wien AG.

The Melbourne based fund, has offered €80 a share, or 29.7% more than the last closing price on Friday, October 10, for a stake of between 20% and 29.9% via its Global Infrastructure Fund.

A stake of more than 30% requires an investor to make a bid for all of a company’s outstanding shares under Austrian stock law.

Flughafen Wien AG was privatised in 1992 and has been listed at the Vienna Stock Exchange since then, and its shareholders are province of Lower Austria with 20%, city of Vienna 20%, private employee participation foundation 10%, and private shareholders make up 50%.

Vienna would not be IFM’s first airport investment as it owns a stake in Manchester Airports Group, and has holdings in Australian airports for cities including Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide.

The offer will be published in accordance with Austrian law unless the nation’s Takeover Commission prohibits it, IFM says.

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Flughafen Wien AG reported in August that Q2 net income was around €31.9 million and passenger traffic is set to rise by 1-3% this year.

Peter Kleemann, from Flughafen Wien AG’s corporate communications department, says neither Vienna Airport nor its main shareholders are selling any shares.

He continues: “The actual information just describes that a private investment company (IFM) is interested in buying and getting a total share between 20% and 29.9%.

“This can only be done by buying from private shareholders and therefore IFM announced a public offer. In the next weeks it will be clear whether IFM will become a shareholder of Vienna Airport or not.

“From Vienna Airport´s point of view that announcement can be seen as a proof that the good performance of Vienna Airport is being recognized on international financial markets.

“As the binding offer is not done yet we cannot comment on that but basically it shows that our good development in the last years is reflected on the market.”

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