Australian investment firm buys Leeds Bradford Airport for undisclosed sum

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Australian investment management firm AMP Capital has snapped up Leeds Bradford Airport for an undisclosed sum.

The deal will see ownership transferred from private equity firm Bridgepoint, which bought the airport for 214 million euros (£191 million) under a privatisation plan by West Yorkshire councils in 2007.

Simon Ellis, head of AMP Capital's European origination division, said: "With its strong underlying fundamentals including freehold ownership with well-invested infrastructure, a diversified airline mix and its catchment area in an economic hub of the North of England, Leeds Bradford Airport is a highly attractive investment and a great fit for AMP Capital's global infrastructure platform."

The airport - which primarily runs international short-haul flights as well as domestic routes - has a catchment area of 5.3 million people, 2.9 million of which live within an hour's travel to the site.

Bridgepoint said passenger numbers have grown nearly 40% to more than 4 million over the past five years, while adjusted underlying earnings have grown 25% per year.

AMP Capital said it was also intrigued by regional growth rates.

"The airport serves the Yorkshire and the Humber region, one of the fastest-growing regions in the UK with a population growth of 6% since 2001 and there is also potential for further route development," Mr Ellis said.

Leeds Bradford Airport currently employs around 460 staff.