Budapest Airport sold

BAA sold in early May its majority share of Budapest Airport's operator to a consortium led by Germany's Hochtief AirPort. The consortium, which has purchased BAA's near-75% share in the airport for €1.9 billion ($2.6 billion), also includes Canada's Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec, Singapore's GIC Special Investments and Frankfurt's KfW IPEX-Bank. BAA decided to sell its stake in Budapest Airport last year after it was taken over by Spain's Ferrovial.

Istanbul airport privatised

Turkey launched a tender in May to select a firm to develop and operate a new terminal at Istanbul's Sabiha Gokcen airport. The winner will also take over operation of the airport's existing terminal. Sabiha Gokcen, which opened in 2001 as an alternative gateway for Istanbul, is Turkey's third largest airport after Istanbul Ataturk Airport and Antalya Airport.

THY in acquisition mode

Turkish Airlines (THY) has revealed plans to acquire another carrier. The Star Alliance member says buying another airline is part of its strategic plan to become one of Europe's top five carriers. However it has not identified an acquisition target, says president Temel Kotil. Codeshares have also begun with Lufthansa, he says.

Ryanair grows in Milan Ryanair is expanding its Bremen and Bergamo Orio Al Serio bases. The Irish low-cost carrier is adding seven routes at Bremen in Germany by October. Bergamo outside Milan will grow by nine routes by early 2008.

Air Finland expands

Air Finland plans to launch charter services to the USA this summer with Boeing 757s. The Helsinki-based operator, which already serves Canada as well as several destinations in Asia and South America, is also adding services this summer to the Dominican Republic and Mexico.

Aer Lingus adds routes

Aer Lingus is to launch six new European routes this winter. Flights will be launched from Dublin to Helsinki, Bucharest, Agadir and Funchal. Services will be resumed from Dublin to Copenhagen and Cork to Munich.

Source: Airline Business