The Qatar Investment Authority is taking a 20% stake in Heathrow operator BAA in a £900 million deal through subsidiary Qatar Holding.
Qatar Holding is buying 10.62% of the stake from Spanish conglomerate, Ferrovial, S.A. for £478 million.
The other 9.38% is coming from two other shareholders, Britannia Airport Partners LP (5.63%) and GIC Special Investments (3.75%). Britannia Airport Partners LP is controlled by Canada’s Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec.
The total value of the deal was £900 million.
The Qatar sovereign fund has been a major institutional investor in the United Kingdom and said in a statement that it “maintains its view that the United Kingdom remains an attractive investment destination and there is long-term fundamental strength in the British economy.
“This acquisition is a key element in our exposure to the infrastructure sector, and help to further diversify Qatar Holding global investment portfolio.
“Qatar Holding looks forward to working together with our fellow shareholders and the management team of BAA to enhance the company’s industry leadership and create sustainable value.” The statement said.
BAA operates Heathrow and Stansted airports in London, Glasgow and Aberdeen airports in Scotland, as well as Southampton airport in southern England.
A consortium formed by Ferrovial, FGP Topco Ltd., had acquired BAA in 2006. The agreed terms will see Qatar Holding enter the owners’ consortium with 20% shareholding, and commensurate reductions in the shareholdings of Ferrovial and other investors who participate in this transaction.
“The sale of this stake in BAA is part of Ferrovial’s strategy of establishing a market valuation of our assets and improving the structure of our investment portfolio,” Ferrovial CEO Inigo Meiras said in a statement.
The deal is subject to regulator approval.
Barclays is financial adviser to Qatar.