Gautam Adani-led Adani Enterprises has won the bid to manage five major airports during a recently held auction process to operate domestic airports across the country, as per a news report in Business Standard.
According to the report, the Adanis emerged as the highest bidder for Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Mangalore, Trivandrum and Lucknow airports, marking a grand foray into the aviation sector. The Narendra Modi government had invited bids from private players to operate the airports for 50 years, as per sources cited in the BS report.
The report notes that the Adanis out-bidded other private players by a long margin. In the case of Ahmedabad Airport, the conglomerate proposed a bid of Rs 177 per passenger, as compared to the next highest bidder GMR, which had proposed a bid of Rs 85 per passenger. Similarly, in the case of Lucknow Airport, the Adani Enterprises proposed a quote of Rs 171 per passenger, compared to the next highest bid, AMP’s Rs 139 per passenger.
Various media reports cited AAI officials confirming the development, though an official communication from the Airports Authority of India (AAI) was still awaited as of Monday evening.
Unnamed AAI officials have been quoted as saying that the Adani Group will be taking control of the airports as soon as other formalities are cleared.
Media reports have noted that Adani’s entry into the aviation sector would mark the beginning of a new era in the airport management sector, with just two companies, GMR and GVK, so far being the major players.