London’s is to be sold to Manchester Airports Group for £1.5 billion ($2.38 billion).
The deal announced late on Jan. 18 will see the U.K.’s fourth busiest airport in term of passenger and main low-fare airline gateway transfer to the owner of Manchester, East Midlands and Bournemouth Airport by the end of February.
Negotiations have been underway for around five months and follow the U.K. Competition Commission’s July 2011 ruling that the then-British Airport Authority (BAA)—owned by Spanish multi-national Ferrovial—had to sell two of its UK airports, one in Scotland and the other in England. As a result BAA, now known as Heathrow Ltd, in April sold Edinburgh Airport to Global Infrastructure Partners, the owner of Gatwick.
Colin Matthews, CEO of Heathrow Ltd, says, “We wish the new owners every success and are confident the airport will continue to flourish. We will continue to focus on improving Heathrow, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Southampton airports.”
Manchester Airports Group Plc (MAG) was not available for comment.