France’s Vinci to exit US airport activities

2nd March 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, March 2 (AFP) - French construction and services group Vinci said Wednesday it would withdraw progressively from certain airport activities in the United States and focus on cargo.

PARIS, March 2 (AFP) - French construction and services group Vinci said Wednesday it would withdraw progressively from certain airport activities in the United States and focus on cargo.

The decision is expected to cut 2005 sales by around EUR 83 million (USD 110 million), chief executive Antoine Zacharias told a news conference following publication of the group's 2004 results.

Zacharias said pricing pressure had persuaded Vinci to re-centre on cargo and "gently" withdraw from runway services, with the loss of 1,200-1,300 US jobs.

Among the activities affected were aircraft placement, roll-backs and de-icing.

"The runway services sector is a real service that we would have handled with fewer and better qualified personnel, but this project dried up because the airlines are fighting among themselves, we will therefore withdraw gently from this activity to concentrate on cargo," the Vinci chief executive said.

Vinci's remaining airport services activities will continue to generate EUR 250-300 million annually in sales, he added.

The group was interested, moreover, by certain activities at the French airports in Lyon, Marseille and Nice, Zacharias indicated.

Finally, he said the construction company would not seek to develop Asian activities because it did not consider them sustainable in the long term.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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