The President of Aecon Concessions and Chairman of Skyport, Steve Nackan, today confirmed that the company contracted to build Bermuda’s new multi-million dollar airport, has been sold to CCCC International Holding Limited (“CCCI”), a wholly owned subsidiary of China Communications Construction Company Limited.

In a statement released just before noon, the company President reaffirmed Aecon’s “steadfast commitment to Bermuda and the Airport Redevelopment Project”.

“It is business as usual at Aecon and on the Bermuda airport terminal construction project,” said Mr Nakan.

“This agreement will create value for our shareholders and enhance Aecon’s capabilities and growth potential, something that we’re very excited about. By joining the third largest construction company in the world, Aecon and Skyport will ultimately benefit from enhanced capabilities and financial resources. However, Aecon will remain a Canadian company.

“This sale will have no impact on the day-to-day of the construction of the new airport terminal or Skyport. The Aecon management team and friendly Bermudian Skyport employees will remain in place and the new airport will be completed on-time and on-budget with the guarantee of the Canadian Commercial Corporation. We look forward to delivering a state-of-the-art terminal in 2020.”

A separate statement highlighted the following:

  • All-cash consideration of $20.37 per share; 42 percent premium to unaffected share price1
  • Aecon gains access to new platforms and partnerships for continued growth in Canada and abroard; CCCI advances its global growth strategy
  • New growth and employment opportunities expected as Aecon gains significant capabilities and financial strength by joining the world’s largest network of engineering and construction companies
  • Aecon will retain its name, continue to be Canada-headquartered and led by its Canadian management team
  • Aecon and CCCI share a strong commitment to maintaining customer service excellence and a safety-first culture
  • Aecon board of directors unanimously recommends transaction to shareholders

The Toronto based Aecon Group and CCCC International Holding Limited confirmed that the “definitive agreement under which CCCI will acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares of Aecon for $20.37 per share in cash, representing an enterprise value of $1.51 billion”.

According to the statement: “The purchase price represents a 42 percent premium to Aecon’s unaffected share price on August 24, 2017. The board of directors of Aecon has unanimously recommended this transaction.”

It was also noted that they believe the deal represents “a very positive outcome for Aecon” and the company’s “key shareholders”.

“This transaction is the result of an active and diligent sale process that has enabled us to select an outstanding partner and create significant shareholder value,” said Aecon’s Chairman Brian Tobin, PC, OC.

CCCI President Lu Jianzhong said: “This is an excellent fit for both of our companies. Aecon has a strong management team and a very impressive track record that have made it a leading construction company in Canada and a pioneer in public private partnerships and concession operations. It will now gain access to significant capital, complementary infrastructure expertise and an international network to support its growth ambitions,” he added.

Benefits to Canada listed include:

  • CCCI’s size and financial strength will augment Aecon’s access to capital and its ability to bid for larger and more complex projects in Canada, enhancing domestic competition for construction services, and will enable it to compete for more international projects
  • CCCI will seek out areas in which Aecon could deploy its unique expertise across CCCI’s international network
  • Aecon will continue to be headquartered in Canada
  • Retention of Aecon’s Canada-bassed employees, offering opportunities for Canadians to benefit from expected future growth
  • Continuity of Canadian management and ongoing adherence to Canadian standards of corporate governance
  • Preservation of the iconic Aecon brand in Canada
  • Aecon’s Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability Policy will continue, as will its support for Canadian suppliers and community organizations and its commitment to operate in a safe and responsible manner

CCCI is the overseas investment and financing arm and a wholly-owned subsidiary of China Communications Construction Company Limited (CCCC), one of the world’s largest engineering and construction groups.

What all of this means for Bermuda and the taxpayers footing the bill remains to be seen. There has yet to be an official response on the part of the Bermuda Government.