From January to October 2022, more than 135 million passengers moved in the country, according to the Federal Civil Aviation Agency, through a network of 67 airports. As the number of passengers grows to help national aviation, it is important to observe how beneficial this can be for airport groups, especially when our aviation is involved in a turbulent and stressful political scenario, precisely because of a controversial airport.
Airports are civil service infrastructures that have the necessary facilities and services (fuel, emergency, counters, waiting rooms, traffic control, etc.) to receive commercial or private flights. Airports generate air, non-aeronautical or commercial revenues, the former being those related to the use of space and airport facilities for airlines and passengers (TUAs), such as landing fees, use of terminals and passenger lounges, car parks, parking and aircraft traffic in relation to the size of the aircraft, among others. The second type of income, commercial, is all those that are not related to aviation, such as rental of facilities, aviation fuel concessions, sales rights in stores and restaurants, parking lots and car rentals, hotels, taxis, related properties, etc. Stores and any potential business.
At the end of the 1990s, Latin American governments decided to use different airport development models, such as long-term airport management, planning, financing and operation concessions. There is also the corporate model, in which an independent company is set up to plan and manage the airport, or direct government management through secretariats, or the non-profit model.
In Mexico, 35 airports were granted for fifty years starting in 1998, dividing them into regions to form four original airport groups: Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacífico (GAP), Centro Norte (OMA), Sureste (ASUR) and Grupo de la Mexico City (GACM). The other airports, mostly small and regional, will be managed by the state-owned Aeropuertos y Servicios Auxiliares (ASA).
No foreign company can own more than 49% of an airport, so the airport groups were merged between national and foreign owners. An example is GAP, owned by Mexican Laura Diez Barroso Azcárraga, who also chairs the board of directors of Grupo Santander Mexico and is the most important businesswoman in the country according to Forbes magazine, and the Spanish state-owned AENA Internacional, which manages all airports. of that country. GAP has 12 airports in the national territory, the most important being the airports in Guadalajara, Tijuana, San José del Cabo and Vallarta, in addition to new concessions in Jamaica, which generated a net profit of 6 thousand 43 million pesos in the last year of 2021 .
Located in the center-north of the country, OMA is managed by the Quintana Kawage family, which also owns the construction company ICA. Most of the foreign investment at the beginning of the month was acquired by the French consortium Vinci Airports, the largest airport concessionaire in the world, with more than fifty airports in 11 countries, for US$ 815 million. OMA is responsible for 13 airports, including Monterrey (where Vinci will invest US$820 million) and other smaller airports with more business than tourist destinations.
Grupo de Aeroportos del Sudeste, which posted a profit of 2,678 million pesos in the third quarter of the year alone, operates nine airports, led by Cancun, followed by Mérida and expanded to Colombia, where it operates ten airports, and to San Juan in Puerto Rico. 🇧🇷 ASUR no longer owns the majority of foreign investment and is owned by Fernando Chico Pardo, who chairs the boards of directors of the Carso and Posadas groups, and the ADO transport group.
Parastatals ASA (16 airports) and Mexico City Airport Group complete the list, as the canceled NAICM would become part of the GACM. If the recent amendments to the airport and civil aviation laws proposed by the federation are approved, another state company will be formed: “Olmec Maya Mexica Airport, Rail and Ancillary Services Group” (OMM), which will be responsible for AIFA airports (currently within its own group of airports), Chetumal, Tulum, Campeche and a few others.
ASA, whose revenue in 2019 was 15,417 million pesos, also has agreements for state governments to act as a concessionaire, such as the airports of Querétaro, Toluca and Tuxtla Gutiérrez. In addition, there are private airports such as Puerto Peñasco in Sonora and Cabo San Lucas and Del Norte in Monterrey.
2019 was a good year for aviation and the earnings of airport groups were twelve times more profitable than airlines, which is disproportionate, even more so considering the fragility that the pandemic and category 2 left them, and that the Airport groups outperformed Fast pre-coronavirus margins without many passengers.
Thus, the stable expenses and the portfolio of commercial and aeronautical revenues that the airport provides make it a permanent business, capable of withstanding difficult times with profitability and independence. This helps us understand why the huge economic damage left by the airport has always been desired by powerful groups of businessmen and politicians, and by all governments in power, which has sometimes been the same.
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