Aena acquires majority stake in Luton airport

Many aircrafts grounded in Luton airport because of the volcanic activity in April 2010 / Flickr - Geoff Collins

Last Friday, the Spanish council of Ministers authorised Aena to acquire the majority of London Luton airport. Thus, Aena acquires ownership of 11% of Luton airport reaching a total controlling stake of 51%. A 40% participation had been already bought in November 2013.

Luton airport served 9.7 million passengers in 2013. It is the fifth largest UK airport in passengers. It is also easyJet‘s main base

With regard to the other Aena airports, Luton is the sixth, after Gran Canaria and ahead of Alicante-Elche

ABC said this purchase is a part of the Aena’s plan to increase the international presence in strategic airports. As we have been informing, this would make the Aena privatisation more attractive to investors.


The IPO’s brochure for the privatisation about to be published.

Precisely, according to Expansión, the Spanish Minister of Development, Ana Pastor, confirmed this morning that Aena is expected to publish the IPO’s brochure in October as we had informed together with the Aena’s privatisation deadlines. She also reminded that Aena will continue to be a public company, since the Government will keep the control of 51% of the capital.

 Aena is a proof that a public company can be efficient

Figures improve, some airports are still unsustainable though

Things seem to be improving for Aena in terms of traffic. We had already explained that the April figures were getting better already. The accumulated data in August showed a good +4.52% for Aena. Even some airports like Madrid start to grow after several years losing passengers.

However, yesterday elEconomista reminded there still are some airports that may be unsustainable. In fact, 8 Spanish airports continue to fail in reaching 100 passengers a day. Experts say this is the minimum expected for an airport maintenance to be justified.

These airports are

To this respect, it is worth noting that Vitoria is mainly a cargo airport. Also, Madrid-Cuatro Vientos and Córdoba do not reach those 100 passengers a day either, but they have some other non commercial activities there. Among these airports, La Gomera, Burgos, Logroño and Vitoria do not have flights scheduled everyday.

Huesca did not even have one passenger per day so far in 2014. Only 215 passengers used the airport until August.

Albacete only served 824 passengers in the same period.


Photo:  Many aircrafts grounded in Luton airport because of the volcanic activity in April 2010 / Geoff Collins