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Funds buy 18 French airports from Canadian developer

Buyout firm Ciclad and the holdings of a French entrepreneur have also acquired the rights to run the port of Rouen, reportedly trumping a rival offer by Eiffage.

Ciclad and Impact Holding, a vehicle run by French businessman Jean-Luc Schnoebelen, have bought the ongoing operations of Canadian developer SNC-Lavalin in France.

The company, which had been assessing the pair’s offer since August 2016, will offload 18 regional airports to a joint venture called Edeis. The package also includes the operations and maintenance of the port of Rouen as well as 13 infrastructure management agencies.

The transaction, the value of which was not disclosed, follows a management shake-up at SNC-Lavalin triggered by a series of scandals and corruption allegations. Former chief operating officer Neil Bruce took over as chief executive from Robert Card in September 2015.

The sale concludes a process that had also attracted interest from French developer Eiffage, according to local reports.

The airports that have now changed hands comprise hubs in Angoulême, Annecy, Auxerre, Bourges, Châlon Champforgeuil, Cherbourg, Dijon, Le Havre, Mayotte, Nîmes, Reims, Rouen, Saint Martin Grand Case, Tarbes, Toulouse Francazal, Tours, Troyes and Vannes. Also included is the airport of Castellon in Spain.