Fraport – Copelouzos to Manage Concession for 40 Years – 14 Airports Including Thessaloniki, Chania (Crete), Kerkyra (Corfu), Kos, Rhodes and Others – Some 19 Million Passengers Annually.
Fraport AG Frankfurt Airport Services Worldwide and its partner Copelouzos Group have been selected as preferred investor for a 40 year operating concession by the Hellenic Republic Assets Development Fund (HRADF) for 14 regional airports in Greece including Aktio, Chania (Crete), Kavala, Kefalonia, Kerkyra (Corfu), Kos, Mitilini, Mykonos, Rhodes, Samos, Santorini, Skiathos, Thessaloniki – Greece’s second largest city – and Zakynthos.
Combined, these airports served a total of about 19.1 million passengers in 2013. The total purchase price of about 1,234 billion euros will be paid by the time of closing, expected in the autumn of 2015. Fraport AG will hold a majority share in the consortium. The new operating company is expected to generate revenue of more than 180 million euros in 2016 and EBITDA exceeding 90 million euros.
Against strong international competition, Fraport and Copelouzos delivered a convincing bid to win the privatization tender for these Greek airports. Fraport AG’s executive board chairman Dr. Stefan Schulte expressed satisfaction with this latest new expansion of the company’s international portfolio: “The Greek regional airports add another airport investment with dynamic development potential. The choice for Fraport underscores our position as a leading global airport manager. Our extensive know-how gained over many decades will contribute to expanding and strengthening the competitive position of the Greek regional airports.”
As new owner, the Fraport – Copelouzos consortium will be responsible for maintaining, operating, managing, upgrading and developing the 14 gateways of international tourism until 2055. The mainland airports include Aktio (PVK), Kavala (KVA) and Thessaloniki (SKG). The remaining eleven are located on the Greek islands of Corfu/Kerkyra (CFU), Crete/Chania (CHQ), Kefalonia (EFL), Kos (KGS), Mitilini (MJT), Mykonos (JMK), Rhodes (RHO), Samos (KGS), Santorini (JTR), Skiathos (JSI) and Zakynthos (ZTH).
The founder and chairman of Copelouzos Group, Dimitris Copelouzos, stressed the project’s importance at the local, national and international level: “Modernization of the airports will allow us, via reliable and safer transportation services, to further enhance Greek tourism continuously – thus empowering competitiveness of the local and national economies and generating new jobs. Our goal is to create airport gateways that meet the growing needs and expectations of the Greek people as well as visitors from around the globe.”
Greece ranks among the world’s top 10 countries in terms of the number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Tourism is a key sector of the Greek economy, accounting for about 18 percent of the country’s GDP. According to the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the number of international tourists visiting Greece grew by 17 percent in the first half of 2014. This continues the strong performance of last year when Greece welcomed some 18 million international tourists (up 16 percent) who generated 16 billion U.S. dollars for the economy (up13 percent). The country is striving to exceed 20 million tourists per year – double Greece’s population.
Fraport AG – which ranks among the world’s leading companies in the global airport business – offers a full range of integrated airport management services and boasts subsidiaries and investments on five continents. Furthermore, Fraport is a competent partner in airport retailing and real estate development. In 2013, the Fraport Group generated sales of €2.56 billion, EBITDA of €880.2 million and profit of about €236 million. Last year, more than 103 million passengers used airports around the world in which Fraport has a majority stake. Currently, Fraport’s international portfolio comprises 11 airports in Germany and around the globe.
At its Frankfurt Airport (FRA) home base, Fraport welcomed more than 58 million passengers in 2013 and handled some 2.1 million metric tons of cargo (airfreight and airmail). For the Winter 2014/2015 flight timetable, FRA is served by 98 passenger airlines flying to some 250 destinations in 105 countries worldwide. More than half of FRA’s destinations are intercontinental (beyond Europe) – underscoring Frankfurt’s role as a leading hub in the global air transportation system. In Europe, Frankfurt Airport ranks first in terms of cargo tonnage and is the third-busiest for passenger traffic. With about 55 percent of all passengers using Frankfurt as a connecting hub, FRA also has the highest transfer rate among the major European hubs.
Copelouzos Group plays a leading role in the Greek market and comprises various companies, which are active in the most important business sectors in Greece and internationally. The Group’s core business areas are: natural gas importation and marketing, electricity production and trading, renewable energy sources (wind, hydroelectric, solar), supply of energy equipment, real estate, concessions, exhibition and congress centers, outdoor advertising, airport management, railway projects, construction and project management of large-scale projects, etc. Regarding the airport business, the Group participates in Athens International Airport. Both Copelouzos and Fraport are partners in the Northern Capital Gateway consortium that manages St. Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport (LED).