One of Spain’ biggest companies, the infrastructure group Ferrovial, has announced plans to move its corporate headquarters from Madrid to Amsterdam in the Netherlands in a reverse merger with its wholly owned Dutch subsidiary.
It says the move will allow the company to capitalise on its international business which accounts for 82% of its revenue.
The company has a 25 per cent stake in London’s Heathrow airport, as well as operates regional airports across the UK including Glasgow, Aberdeen and Southampton.
It also manages a terminal of New York’s JFK airport.
Its international toll road division includes projects in the US, Canada, UK, Ireland, Slovakia and Australia.
It will also allow it to seek a listing in the United States where it sees future growth.
However, the move has caused considerable disquiet in Spain not least in the government.
Spain’s deputy prime minister, Nadia Calviño, accused the company of betraying Spain which had provided so much to help it grow into the multinational it is today.
“I don’t think it’s acceptable,” she said and continued that she had already “expressed my rejection of this wrong decision” to Rafael del Pino, Ferrovial’s billionaire chair and the son of its founder.
She said Ferrovial “ owes everything to Spain, that has grown thanks to public investments financed by Spanish citizens. It is an emblem of our country.”
Ignacio Madridejos, CEO of Ferrovial, talks about the corporate reorganization pic.twitter.com/VU28IobDCl
— Ferrovial (@ferrovial) March 1, 2023
Del Pino, who was made an honorary Commander of the British Empire last year has a 20 per cent of the €19bn company had spoken out against the present PSOE Socialist led government’s windfall taxes on the “extraordinary profits” on banks and energy companies in 2023 and 2024.
Ferrovial said that Holland was the “country of choice” as it had a “stable legal framework” and triple A credit rating.
The company hopes to secure shareholder approval to complete the move in the second or third quarter of 2023.
The company stressed the move would not impact its Spanish operations.