Monday, January 19, 2009

Bank Bailed Out, Let's Buy an Airport!

An investment consortium including Citigroup, which in turns owns Citibank -- and which received a $326 billion rescue package from U.S. taxpayers in November -- wants to buy London's Gatwick Airport, according to a report today by Reuters.

Reuters reports from London:

"A consortium consisting of Citi Infrastructure Investors, Vancouver Airport Services and John Hancock Life Insurance company has made an indicative bid for London's Gatwick airport, a spokesman said on Monday. The group is bidding under the name the Lysander Gatwick Investment Group ..."

Gatwick, London's second largest airport, is now owned by the Spanish company Ferrovial, which is soliciting bids. The Times of London newspaper says in tomorrow's editions that the bids, by five competitors, range up to $2.95 billion.

In May 2007, Citigroup's Citi Alternative Investments unit established City Infrastructire Investors to "invest in and manage infrastructure assets."

Reuters said then that Citi was "building a $3 billion fund, including $500 million of its own capital" for the unit to make infrastructure investments partly as a "hedge against inflation."


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