Vedomosti: Sheremetyevo May Be Fully Privatized

Rosimushchestvo, Russia’s federal agency with responsibility for the management of state-owned assets, has been approached by Sheremetyevo Holding Ltd with a view to it purchasing the state-owned shares of Sheremetyevo International Airport, according to several sources in the Russian government, as revealed to Vedomosti business daily, writes.

With 66.1 percent of the Moscow airport’s shares currently in the hands of Sheremetyevo Holding, and the further 30.46 percent owned by the state, Sheremetyevo Holding is in turn owned by Cyprus-registered TPS Avia Holding, 66.22 percent of which is owned by a trust acting in the interests of SVO’s chairman and member of the board Alexander Ponomarenko and Alexander Skorobogatko, respectively.

Sheremetyevo, which serves the country’s Moscow capital, is Russia’s largest airport by traffic numbers. In 2019 it handled some 49.9 million passengers, ranking it as the eighth largest in Europe.

Prior to the consolidation of Sheremetyevo’s assets, initiated in 2015 by Russia’s president and completed in May 2017, Rosimushchestvo controlled almost 100 percent of the airport. In the course of the consolidation, a private company acquired a control package in exchange for an obligation to build new infrastructure at the airport, especially terminal B, underground tunnels connecting the northern (B) and the southern terminal complexes (terminals D, E and F), and a new cargo terminal as well as a refueling complex. All of these projects required an investment of some US$750 million and were completed between 2017 and 2018.

According to the existing agreements, Sheremetyevo Holding has the right to purchase the state-owned shares.

Although no estimate of Sheremetyevo’s assets was disclosed during the consolidation, industry analysts assess the value of the government’s share at some US$1 billion. Should the sale of state-owned shares materialize at this price, it would mark a record-setting deal in Russia’s airport industry.

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