Meinl Airports International Ltd.

Meinl Airports International: Initial stake of 24.9% in the airport of Bydgoszcz Increase to up to 49% depending on consent of Polish Civil Aviation Office

Commitment of EUR 23.5 million for the development of the airport Significant growth potential based on local market – MAI’s expertise will support the exploitation of the potential

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merger, acquisition and takeover/Participation

St, Helier Jersey (euro adhoc) - 10 March 2008 - Meinl Airports International Ltd. ("MAI") has signed contracts for a participation in the Polish airport of Bydgoszcz. In a first step, MAI will get a stake of 24.9% in the airport. A further increase of the participation to up to 49% is intended, but subject to the consent by the Polish Civil Aviation Office. The participation(s) are being conducted in form of a capital increase by the airport operating company "Port Lotniczy Bydgoszcz S.A.".

MAI will invest a total of EUR 23.5 million in the development of Bydgoszcz airport. Following the airport project in Sochaczew, Bydgoszcz airport is already MAI´s second airport transaction in Poland. Bydgoszcz is also the first operating international airport in Poland, which forms such a Public Private Partnership with an international investor. The airport has significant growth potential, in particular due to the market potential of the Region, both outgoing and incoming - based on local population, tourist potential and businesses existing in the region. This is also underlined through already existing and further increasing interest of airlines, notably some low cost airlines. Ryanair, which is operating flights into Bydgoszcz Airport since 2006, has recently announced new destinations and increased frequencies from and to Bydgoszcz. Furthermore, Polish Jet Air has recently started new operations as well. For 2008, MAI expects that the airport will handle already approx. 300,000 passengers - and further MAI intends to work with local partners to increase the traffic by double digit growth rates annually for the foreseeable future.

Participation of up to 49% in Bydgoszcz airport - expected IRR exceeds 15%

MAI will invest EUR 23.5 million in the development of the aviation and non-aviation infrastructure of the airport in Bydgoszcz. As a part to this, MAI will receive in a first step 24.9% of the shares in the airport through a share capital increase. Following this first transaction, MAI will apply for approval from the President of the Civil Aviation Office (CAO) of its intend to take up shares exceeding the thresholds posted by Polish Law of 25% and later 33% of ownership in the share capital of airports. After eventually having received the consent of CAO, MAI will in consent with existing shareholders through another capital increase at given time extend its stake to a total of 49%, which is the legal limit for airport participation by a foreign company according to Polish law. In its details related to the CAO approval, the development of the non-aviation business will be realised through a separate project company, in which MAI will become majority shareholder.

Partners and co-owners of MAI, following the transaction(s), are the City of Bydgoszcz, the Region of Kujawy-Pomerania, state enterprise Polish Airport Operator (PPL), the Cities of Torun and Inowroclaw and as well several other public and private Polish shareholders with smaller stakes. All stakeholders are important partners to realise the intended developments and a basis of common interest is formed to enable prospering of the airport in future. This provides comfort in ensuring successful growth of the airport. Roman Himmler explains: "Bydgoszcz Airport serves an attractive local community and area with high potential. The airport is a prerequisite for further successful development. In the discussions and negotiations during the last months, we have seen same intents and goals by our partners to make use of the airport´s market backbone to form an excellent basis for mutual benefit. MAI can and will assist in achieving the common goals of development of the airport and - hence - the Region and its cities."

The expected IRR for the participation will exceed 15%, based on the realisation of the potentials.

Development of airport infrastructure could be supported by EU funding

The funds, which are being brought to the airport company through MAI´s participation will be used mainly to finance the intended development and extension of the airport infrastructure parallel to the increasing demand and the forecasted passenger growth. The development should be carried out in several phases over the next years. Furthermore, there exists the potential that funds originating from European Union can be received.

The investments in the optimisation of the airport infrastructure and airport extension includes plans for the extension and capacity upgrade of the runway and the development of a new cargo terminal beside other investments like development of an airport car park. A long-term strategic plan also includes facilitating of airport surrounding area. Additionally, new restaurants are planned and a viewing terrace is going to be used more efficiently.

Tourist region with 2.1 million inhabitants - only civil airport in a range of 110km

The airport of Bydgoszcz is the only commercial international airport in a radius of 110km. The airport is located only 3km from the city centre of Bydgoszcz, which is the capital of the Kujawy-Pomerania Region and one of the fastest developing cities in Poland with at the moment approximately 400,000 inhabitants. The whole region of Kujawy-Pomerania has approximately 2.1 million inhabitants.

The airport is not only important due to increasing business travel and outgoing leisure travel. The region of Kujawy-Pomerania is also one of the main tourist regions in Poland. Torun, a city 50km from Bydgoszcz is the home town of Copernicus and is famous for having preserved almost intact its medieval spatial layout. It was inscribed onto the World Heritage List of UNESCO in 1997. Historic architecture can be also found in Bydgoszcz itself and in other cities in the region: Bydgoszcz, the former German Bromberg, has a famous old town with Gothic buildings.

Bydgoszcz hosts NATO Training Centre

The airport of Bydgoszcz is not only a fast growing airport for civil air transport. Bydgoszcz also hosts in its vicinity the NATO Joint Forces Training Centre, which is a further important element of the airport´s current and future development: The airport does not only generate revenues from the traffic from the training centre itself but also benefits from the intended increase of traffic to and from the training centre in possible air-route developments. Furthermore the participants of such trainings are an important source for the airport to boost the non-aviation business at and around the airport.

MAI expects the airport of Bydgoszcz to handle approx. 300,000 passengers in 2008

Poland´s current airport network consist of one central airport in Warsaw, one regional central airport in Krakow and 10 regional airports which have the status of an international airport. Among these regional airports, Bydgoszcz is until now the 8th largest in terms of passenger traffic. The airport terminal has been newly built in 2004 and the technical infrastructure is one of the most modern ones in the country.

Currently, Bydgoszcz airport is being served by the Polish LOT (Bydgoszcz - Warsaw, 3 flights per day), Ryanair and Jet Air. Ryanair has started operations in Bydgoszcz in 2006 and currently is handling flights to London, Dublin and Liverpool. Ryanair also announced to fly from Bydgoszcz to DĂĽsseldorf Weeze. The airline expects that it will handle approximately 60,000 passengers per year only on this route. The Polish airline Jet Air, which is at the moment flying certain routes from Bydgoszcz to Warsaw on behalf of LOT, has started new operations at Bydgoszcz in January 2008, serving flights to Katowice, Copenhagen and Berlin.

Passenger figures have increased with rates of +50% and more over the last years: In 2004, the airport had only 25.000 passengers; in 2007 approximately 200,000 passengers have been handled already. MAI expects that the passenger volume in Bydgoszcz will continue to increase strongly over the coming years. Roman Himmler explains: "Given the increasing interest from international low cost airlines and taking into account the general growth in the Polish air travel - which is with respect to the growth rates comparable with China - we could imagine that by 2008, we will already handle 300,000 passengers. On the longer-term, a volume of more than 1 million passengers has been forecasted."

Notes to the Editor:

MAI is a long term investor in airports, parts of airports or airport related businesses in particular - but not limited to - in the growth markets in Central and Eastern Europe, South Eastern Europe and Russia. The Company was founded in 2006 and since April 2007 is listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange.

MAI has been successful in acquiring already six assets and today MAI is an active investor and a player to be reckoned with in airports with more than 30 million annual passengers and that number is growing. In Poland and Russia, MAI has been the first foreign investor, which has been able to acquire a stake in an international airport. Among others the Company´s current portfolio consists of investments in "Lake Baikal Airport", Ulan Ude (Russia), TAV Airports (Turkey), Airport Development Sochaczew (Poland) and Bydgoszcz Airport (Poland).

Furthermore, MAI is evaluating more than 50 projects, most of which are located in the Company´s main target region: Central, Eastern and South Eastern Europe including the CIS countries.

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ots Originaltext: Meinl Airports International Ltd.
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Further inquiry note:
Nadine Gilles
Member of the Board / Meinl Airport Managers Ltd.
+421 911 500 730

Branche: Real Estate
ISIN:      AT0000A053N4
Index:    other listings
Börsen:  Wiener Börse AG / Third Market

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