Report: Alinda linked to BAA stake sale

Last year, Ferrovial announced its intention to sell a 10% stake in UK airports operator BAA and is now conducting preliminary talks ‘with various entities’ about the sale. But Ferrovial has declined to specify the names of any potential bidders.

Spanish infrastructure group Ferrovial may be looking to sell a 10 percent stake in UK airports operator BAA to Connecticut-based infrastructure firm Alinda Capital Partners, according to a report in UK newspaper The Sunday Times.

Alinda did not respond to a request for comment as of press time, but Ferrovial issued a statement saying that “sale of a 10 percent stake in BAA is advancing positively and is still in a preliminary phase”.

Ferrovial is in talks “with various entities that have expressed interest,” according to the statement. Ferrovial said it will not provide details on any of the interested parties until the sale is finalised, which should happen by the end of the year.

Alinda currently owns an interest in BAA, according to the firm’s  website. Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec and Government of Singapore Investment Corporation are co-owners of BAA, which operates London’s Heathrow and Stansted airports, Southampton airport and three Scottish airports.

Ferrovial announced last year its intention to sell a portion of its 55.87 percent stake in BAA as part of a plan to pay down debt and fund new projects. Ferrovial has also divested itself of other assets, including a 10 percent stake in Toronto’s 407 highway, which was sold to the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board for €640 million.

Alinda, an independent firm which has raised $7 billion across two infrastructure funds, has also invested in the Heathrow Express rail service and acquired UK utility South Staffordshire Water and associated businesses, according to the firm’s website.

Starting in July 2007, Alinda invested $604 million for minority ownership in BAA, according to a presentation on potential infrastructure managers that consultancy EnnisKnupp made to the Illinois State Universities Retirement System in October 2009.