A million dollar deal in Queenstown

31 July 2010

Auckland Airport and Queenstown Airport have struck a multi-million dollar deal designed to increase visitor numbers at both destinations and grow New Zealand tourism.

The airports formed a strategic alliance last month, with Auckland Airport buying an almost 25% stake in its southern counterpart for $27.7 million.

Auckland Airport chairman Tony Frankham said the airports share a goal to boost passenger volumes at Auckland and Queenstown through strengthened air services development and dual-destination tourism promotions.

The airports had been working together informally for the past year, during which time there had been a 36% increase in passengers between the two destinations.

Auckland Airport chief executive Simon Moutter said a formal alliance was consistent with Auckland Airport's strategy to add to shareholder value by shifting some resources into areas that will drive earnings faster than the company's organic growth rate.

"We can accelerate growth in international passenger volumes – which represent our biggest value driver – by forming deeper partnerships with selected and like-minded airports that share our growth focus on particular airlines and travel markets,” he said.

Photo courtesy of Destination Queenstown