Manchester Airports Group (MAG) has sold Bournemouth Airport to Regional & City Airports (RCA) for an undisclosed sum.
The regional airport in southern England has been acquired by RCA, a subsidiary of Rigby Group, which also owns Coventry, Norwich and Exeter airports. The firm also manages Solent, City of Derry and Blackpool airports.
Sir Peter Rigby said: “The acquisition of Bournemouth Airport represents an important landmark in our strategy to create a robust and credible group of regional airport assets and services across the UK. Not only does it expand our catchment to include the major regions of South England, but also focuses operations on a core market poorly serviced by the major aviation players.”
Day-to-day management of the adjacent 200-acre Aviation Business Park will be handled by Rigby Real Estate, the parent group’s specialist property management division.
Charlie Cornish, Chief Executive of MAG, added: “Bournemouth Airport and its people have been part of our company for a long time. RCA has a detailed integration plan in place to ensure a seamless transition of ownership and operations at Bournemouth which will maintain business as usual for passengers and customers. We wish the new owners every success and are confident that the airport will continue to flourish as we continue to focus on improving Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands airports.”
Bournemouth Airport was bought by Bournemouth City and Dorset County councils in 1969, then sold to the transport conglomerate National Express in 1995. It was subsequently acquired by MAG in March 2001. Since then, a new terminal has been built. Passenger numbers peaked at 1.08m in 2007 and have since dropped off, with 667,981 travellers passing through the doors in 2016. The airport is currently served year-round by Ryanair and TUI Airways (Thomson), while easyJet Switzerland and Freebird Airlines operate seasonal charters.
Photo: Bournemouth Airport in the UK has been bought by Regional & City Airports. (Wikimedia Commons / Mike Smith)