Australian airport owner in A$882m refi deal

Westralia Airports Corporation, the owner of Perth Airport, has arranged A$740m of new debt facilities and raised A$142m of equity from its existing shareholders.

The owner and operator of Perth Airport, Westralia Airports Corporation, has raised A$882 million (€528 million; $772 million) through a refinancing transaction.

Westralia has arranged new debt facilities to the value of A$740 million from an eight-strong banking syndicate, as well as securing A$142 million of further commitments from its shareholders.

Perth Airport CEO Brad Geatches said the combination of the new debt equity financing will go towards expanding the Western Australia airport over the next three years: “These funds will underpin our investment in a new domestic terminal, ‘Terminal WA’, and expansion of our existing international terminal, as well as many other projects that will further improve customer service at Perth Airport.”

The financing will also be used to refinance existing bank debt facilities.

The largest shareholders in Westralia, through its parent company Airstralia Development Group, are the Utilities Trust of Australia (38.26 percent) and the Australia Infrastructure Fund (AIX, 29.74 percent), which is managed by Hastings Funds Management. AIX commented on the refinancing: “The support extended by the Airport’s existing relationship banks, as well as that from newly established relationships with domestic and international banks, was pleasing and illustrates the strength of core cash flows generated by Perth Airport.”

Westralia Airports Corporation acquired the 99-year lease of the airport, which last year handled 2.6 million international and 7.1 million regional passengers, in 1997.