Switzerland’s Zurich Airport has entered an agreement to sell 5% of its stake in India’s Bengaluru International Airport Limited (BIAL) for $48.9m.

The European airport will divest BIAL’s minority shareholding to Fairfax Financial Holdings.

The transaction is dependent on customary closing conditions, and is expected to be completed by mid-2016.

BIAL owns and operates Kempegowda International Airport Bengaluru (KIAB), which opened in 2008, under a 30-year concession agreement with the Government of India.

Built under a public-private partnership, the Bengaluru airport was the first greenfield airport in India.

In 2001, Zurich Airport was appointed as the operator and shareholder for KIAB.

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Since the beginning of KIAB’s construction in 2005, Zurich Airport has transferred its operational services to BIAL through an operations, management and services agreement (OMSA).

In 2009, the Swiss airport sold 12% of its stakes in BIAL to GVK Power and Infrastructure, a division of the Indian conglomerate GVK.

GVK currently holds a 10% stake in BIAL, while Siemens owns a 26% shareholding stake and Fairfax owns the majority stake of 38%, reported The Hindu Businessline.

The Airports Authority of India and the Karnataka Government each hold 13% of the shares.

Image: Kempegowda International Airport Bengaluru is both owned and operated by BIAL. Photo: courtesy of sarangib / Pixabay