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Adani has become third largest private airport operator of India in a jiffy

The conglomerate made its foray into the airport sector after securing a 50-year contract to run, develop and manage the Ahmedabad, Guwahati, Jaipur, Lucknow, Mangalore and Thiruvananthapuram airports

Adani has become third largest private airport operator of India in a jiffy
Adani has become third largest private airport operator of India in a jiffy

Mumbai: After winning the mandate to operate all the six government-owned airports that were put up for privatisation recently, Adani Group will become the third largest private operator in passenger volume, behind only the GMR Group and GVK Group. Tycoon Gautam Adani-led conglomerate made its foray into the airport sector after securing a 50-year contract to run, manage and develop the Ahmedabad, Guwahati, Jaipur, Lucknow, Mangalore and Thiruvananthapuram airports after quoting revenue share in the range of Rs 115 to Rs 177 per passenger. “With these six airports under concession, the Adanis will become the third largest private airport operator in terms of passengers handled, after the GMR group and GVK group,” ICRA said in a note.

The 6 airports collectively handled 30 million passengers last year

The six airports to be operated by Adani handled 30 million passengers together last fiscal year, including 23.6 million domestic and 6.4 million international passengers. Around 65.69 million passengers were handled by the GMR group-run New Delhi airport in 2018 fiscal as the GVK group-operated Mumbai airport handled 48.5 million in the same period.

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The Adani Group offered Rs 177, Rs 174, Rs 171, Rs 168, Rs 115 and Rs 160 for Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Thiruvananthapuram, Mangaluru and Guwahati airports, respectively, said the Airports Authority of India, which currently runs these airports. The broad range of bids that were obtained, such as in Guwahati where bids varied from Rs 18 to Rs 160 per passenger, demonstrates the bidding challenges in regard to estimation of variables such as traffic, real estate monetisation, non-aeronautical revenues and capex for such a long concession term of 50 years, ICRA said.

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