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Porter Airlines Planning to Sell Billy Bishop Terminal

The sale is expected to value the terminal at more than $500 million, which the company would channel into expansion.

Photo by syncros from the Torontoist Flickr Pool

Photo by syncros from the Torontoist Flickr Pool.

Porter Airlines is putting its Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport passenger terminal on the market, reports the Wall Street Journal. People “familiar with the matter” have told the paper that the company is working with RBC Capital Markets and Barclays Capital on the sale, expected to be worth something in the neighbourhood of $500 million.

Porter’s lease doesn’t expire until 2032, but prospective buyers will have the option to take it on and then to renew, the sources said.

Private-equity firms and pension firms, the WSJ notes, would likely be numbered among those prospective buyers, as airport investments tend to offer stable returns.

And what would Porter do with that $500 million? The sources indicate it would be used “to grow [the company’s] airline business”—what form that expansion would take, in light of the current battle over airport expansion and city council’s request that various conditions related to the matter be satisfied, is unclear. A Porter spokesperson contacted by the Globe and Mail confirmed the WSJ story, and indicated that the company would be issuing a statement.