The French Ministers of Finance and Economy finally made a decision on 4th December. A major share of the Toulouse-Blagnac Airport (ATB) management company owned, up to now, by the French State will be transferred to Symbiose, a Chinese-led consortium. In the end it was the 308 million Euros offered by them that finally clinched the deal.
Which means that Symbiose is now a 49.99% shareholder of the Toulouse-Blagnac Airport company, leaving 50.01% of the shares in the hands of the State and local governments (Toulouse Chamber of Commerce and industry: 25%; French State: 10.01%; Midi-Pyrénées region: 5%; Haute-Garonne General Council: 5%; Toulouse Metropolitan and Urban Communities: 5%).
But what constitutes this consortium? On the one hand, Shandong Hi-Speed Group, a Chinese public company specialized in the development and management of highways, airports and seaports, and on the other hand, Friedmann Pacific Asset Management, a Hong Kong based financial group, established in 1998, involved in aerospace; both of whom would have brought solid guarantees to the negotiating table, including: job maintenance, development of the airport zone’s activities, and even plans for a new exhibition centre to the tune of tens of millions of Euros.
All that remains to be done now is for the State to finalize the change of ownership during the course of 2015. Symbiose might also transfer 16% of their now current 49.99% stake, to a French investor.
We’ll keep you posted.