BBA Aviation in Dubai merger talks

Aug. 28--An engineering firm that dates back to 1879 and lists legendary US car mogul Henry Ford as an early customer, is in merger talks that could create a pounds sterling 2.7bn business.

BBA Aviation provides aircraft services such as de-icing planes, refuelling and baggage handling and said it was in discussions with a division of Dubai Aerospace Enterprise.

The deal is thought to relate to Standard Aero, an Arizona-based engine repair and maintenance business controlled by the Middle Eastern firm.

BBA, which started out in Scotland as a maker of industrial belts, saw its shares rise 3.10p to 310.20p after it said talks with Dubai government-owned DAE were at a preliminary stage.

It also said it had spent pounds sterling 44m buying Los Angeles-based Maguire Aviation.

BBA has 12,000 staff across Europe, America and South America, and it is thought both deals will bolster its footprint in its crucial American market.

Standard Aero has a 4,000-strong workforce and client roster including engine and aircraft makers such as Rolls-Royce and Bombardier.

It saw profits grow 14pc to pounds sterling 63.2m during the first six months of the year on sales of pounds sterling 1.1bn.

BBA first got involved with Aviation acquiring APPH, a hydraulics business in 1986.


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