The list of suitors to take over the management of the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport has been whittled down to six: Flughafen Zürich, PSP, CCII, and IDC; Fraport and Goldman Sachs; GMR Infrastructure and Incheon Airport; Grupo; Aeroportuario del Sureste and Highstar Capital; Grupo Aeropuertos Avance; and. Puerto Rico Gateway Group.
Public Private Partnership Authority Executive Director David Álvarez released the short list of companies Friday, marking the completion of the second of several phases that make up the PPP adjudication process.
The government stands to receive an up-front payment of $1 billion as part of the PPP concession, the government official said. Meanwhile, the selected operator will be required to invest between $40 million and $80 million in “immediate improvements” in the first three years of the contract, which is part of the agreement reached with the airlines to give way to the PPP process, he explained.
“The short list allows the government to figure out who is best qualified and makes the process easier in the next phase,” said Álvarez, Friday morning. “We want to have companies that are capable of bringing new airlines and traffic to the airport, to make sure it remains solid.”
“We are very excited about reputation and experience level of the consortia that will enter the bidding process,” Álvarez said. “Puerto Rico is placed in a position to choose the best operators of airports world to bring to Luis Muñoz Marín to a new level and provide an important stimulus for tourism in the island.”
Last month, the PPPA announced it had requests for qualification bids from 12 global companies interested in managing the LMM in tandem with the government. The other six interested consortia that were left out are: AENA Internacional; TAV Airports Holding; AGUNSA (Agencias Universales S.A); Grupo Aeroportuario del Centro Norte (OMA); Corporación América S.A.; and Advent International Corporation (“Advent”).
The concession will likely be for between 40 and 50 years. The short-list member consortia were selected based on three criteria: reputation and compliance with the PPP law; technical capacities; and financial capacity, Álvarez said.
After the PPP process is completed, and the operator is selected, the government must submit the proposal to the Federal Aviation Administration, which has the final word on the transaction.