Adani Enterprises announced that its subsidiary, Adani Airport Holdings, signed a share subscription agreement with Flemingo Travel Retail and Mumbai Travel Retail.
WHO: Since 1997, Flemingo Travel Retail Limited has been a global travel retail operator specializing in duty-free sales across 27 countries, capitalizing on the trade routes between East Africa and the Middle East.
The company offers cruise and inflight retail, foods and beverages, apparel, electronics, household, personal care, gifts, and other products.
Adani Group entered the airports sector in 2019. Incubated within the group's flagship company Adani Enterprises Ltd. (AEL), Adani Airports won the mandate to modernize and operate six airports—Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Mangaluru, Jaipur, Guwahati and Thiruvananthapuram—through the Airports Authority of India's globally competitive tendering process.
WHY: The deal creates a strategic partnership to operate duty-free outlets in the Indian market airports and seaports. According to its IPO prospectus, travel retailer Flemingo was consistently loss-making in the three years prior to 2018 when it was meant to list. The company was then hit by COVID-19 and has struggled during the pandemic due to a lack of international travelers. The sale confirms its weakened financial position.
IN THEIR OWN WORDS: "This deal makes sense for Adani Airports, especially given the price it paid. Other airport operators have equity positions in duty-free companies in India and Europe. Adani will be looking to grow its airport business platform and it can do that not only by acquiring more airport assets but also by moving into various segments of airport services. Duty-free also tends to contribute significantly to an airport's bottom line. While the pandemic has ravaged this business, it will rebound although it may take a couple of years," Sidharath Kapur, a former executive director and board member of GMR Airports and ex-CEO of Adani Airports, told Forbes.
- On completion of the deal, Adani Airport Holdings will have 74% of share capital of Mumbai Travel Retail. The value of the sale based on the regulatory filing to the Indian stock exchange was 28.5 million Indian rupees ($386,110).
- Last year, the retailer sold off its stake in cruise travel retailer Harding to US hedge fund Davidson Kempner Capital Management for an undisclosed sum.
- In July 2020, Adani Airports took control of Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport, the country’s second-busiest airport.
- Adani Airport Holdings is raising up to $500 million in an overseas bond sale, as it accelerates the modernization of the airports in Ahmedabad, Lucknow, and Mangaluru.
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