EUR 35M Dividend Payout at Aerodrom Ljubljana

14. 05. 2014

EUR 35M Dividend Payout at Aerodrom Ljubljana

The shareholders' meeting of the majority state-owned Ljubljana airport operator endorsed a dividend payout of EUR 35m on Tuesday. The remaining EUR 5m will remain undistributed for the case of potential risks.

These include a potential delay in the sale of airport operator Aerodrom Ljubljana or a negative decision from Brussels in the procedure over state aid for flag carrier Adria Airways, Aerodrom's main partner.


Following the shareholders' decision in September 2013 against the construction of a new passenger terminal, the management of Aerodrom Ljubljana proposed that aside from the EUR 5m in last year's distributable profit, most of the profit allocated for the investment be paid out in dividends too.


The decision means that the shareholders, the biggest of which is the state and affiliated KAD and SOD funds, get a total of EUR 35m. The owners of ordinary shares will get EUR 9.16 gross per share and the owners of preferred stock EUR 9.27 a share within three months.


The shareholders' meeting also voted to give discharge of liability to the management and the supervisory board for last business year. The meeting was attended by 44.22% of the shareholders with voting rights, while these remain suspended for the state and state-run owners based on the regulator's decision of 2012.


Aerodrom Ljubljana CEO Zmago Skobir said the payout was set at the "upper limit", and even that under the conditions that there is no major fall in revenue, that the privatisation is carried out with due care and in according with the owners' planes and that the new owner sees to the airport's development.


Potential risks that could pose a threat to the company in the event of a disrupted time-line emerged after the shareholders' meeting had been called and after the proposal for the dividend payout had been made.

These risks are related to the unpredictable political situation at home and an escalation in the Russia-Ukraine conflict, which could affect oil prices or passenger trends.


Another issue is the indication that the European Commission will take a decision of the eligibility of state aid for Adria Airways sooner than expected, possibly as early as this or next month or mid-season. If the decision was negative despite expectation to the contrary it could impact hard on the carrier.


Adria Airways accounts for 40% of the airport operator's revenues. "If a negative decision by the European Commission coincided with the top season and at the same time with a potential delay in the privatisation of Aerodrom Ljubljana, it could spell out serious liquidity issues," Skobir warned.


Small shareholders backed the proposed distribution with their representative Rajko Stanković saying that the chairman's explanations assured them the company was well prepared. At the same time, small shareholders believed past profits belonged to the existing rather the new owner in case of privatisation.


After recording a growth that was above the European average and above the results posted by airports in the neighbourhood in 2013, Aerodrom Ljubljana expects a further growth in passenger and cargo numbers this year. It also pans new links and the arrival of a new carrier.


Source: The Slovenia Times


EUR 35M Dividend Payout at Aerodrom Ljubljana