PARIS (Reuters) - French plans to privatize Aeroports de Paris (ADP.PA) have attracted strong interest from “several consortiums” including some led by industrial investors, state holdings chief Martin Vial said on Friday.
“As of today the intensity of competition is strong,” Vial told reporters at a briefing in Paris, adding that a successful sale requires “more than two” bidders for the operator of Paris Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports.
ADP has long been tipped as one of the prime candidates to set off a wave of privatizations as the government seeks to raise money for a new fund to finance innovation.
Based on current prices, the government’s 50.6 percent stake in ADP is worth roughly 9 billion euros ($10.20 billion).
Vial, who heads the APE state holdings agency, declined to identify any of the potential buyers.
“There are several consortiums” that have signaled interest, Vial said, with “some industrials” among them. France has said it intends to privatize ADP in 2019 if market conditions permit.
French construction and concessions group Vinci (SGEF.PA), which already owns 8 percent of ADP, has publicly expressed interest in a bigger stake.
Commenting on Milan-listed Atlantia (ATL.MI), which has been considering taking part in the ADP auction, Vial said: “They have always expressed their interest. I did not hear either that they had given up.”
($1 = 0.8821 euros)
Reporting by Laurence Frost; Editing by Dominique Vidalon/Keith Weir