CAI consortium wins tender for Vladivostok airport shares

Business Times Singapore, 26.02.2015

Grouping will get 52.16% of OAO International Airport Vladivostok and will also fully acquire its terminal

A CONSORTIUM comprising Changi Airports International (CAI), the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and Russia-based Basic Element has won a tender to acquire shares in Vladivostok International Airport.

In a joint release, the consortium said that it emerged the winner based on its technical, legal and financial strengths. Under the agreement, the consortium will acquire 52.16 per cent of OAO International Airport Vladivostok and will also fully acquire the airport's terminal, ZAO Terminal Vladivostok.

Each of the three parties will hold an equal stake in the consortium.

Strategically located at the crossroads of two air routes between the Russian Far East and the Asia-Pacific region, Vladivostok International is able to receive all types of planes after its aerodrome went through an overhaul and it received a new terminal.

"Vladivostok is the biggest economy in the Far East of Russia and has been identified to be developed as Russia's strategic gateway to economies in Asia-Pacific," said Lim Liang Song, chief executive of CAI. "We see long-term potential in our investment and will work with all parties to develop the airport into an important aviation hub in the region."

CAI is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Changi Airport Group, which operates Changi Airport.

This is CAI's second investment in Russia, after it teamed up with Basic Element and Sberbank of Russia to develop the airports in the Krasnodar region, including Sochi, Krasnodar, Anapa and Gelendzhik.

Other recent projects include Brazil's Tom Jobim International Airport and the first aerotropolis in India.

RDIF chief executive Kirill Dmitriev said: "With an Open Skies policy in place, this airport has the potential to become a key Russian hub within the Asia-Pacific transportation and logistics network. Over 400 million people live within two hours' flight of Vladivostok. The transportation hub will promote economic development in the region at every level."

Last year, Vladivostok Airport handled some 1.79 million passengers.

Meanwhile, Gulzhan Moldazhanova, the chief of diversified business group Basic Element, said the three partners plan to enhance Vladivostok International by ensuring that it is managed efficiently and safely, while delivering high standards when it comes to both comfort for passengers and servicing for aircraft.

The deal will close after the necessary regulatory approvals are obtained.