BAA drops name to brand airports separately

Luggage trolleys at Heathrow BAA's name will gradually disappear and be replaced by the name of the actual airport

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Airport operator BAA says it is to change the name under which it operates its UK airports and will use the individual airport names.

The company runs Heathrow, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Southampton and Stansted, which it says it will operate solely under their own stand-alone brands..

Competition rules forced BAA to sell Gatwick and Edinburgh airports, and it is currently selling Stansted.

Heathrow now accounts for almost all of the company's business.

The company was formed almost 50 years ago under the British Airports Authority name.

'Different company'

The services provided, and all usual contacts, will remain the same, but over time the BAA.com website will be archived and replaced by pages on the relevant airport websites.

Heathrow chief executive Colin Matthews said: "We are a different company today from when BAA was formed.

"The BAA name no longer fits. We do not represent all British airports; we are not a public authority; and practically speaking the company is no longer a group as Heathrow will account for more than 95% of the business."

BAA said that in future it would publish results only for airports financed with publicly-traded debt, which, after Stansted is sold, involves only Heathrow.

The company was formed by the then Labour government in 1965 as commercial air travel grew in popularity.

It was floated on the stock market as one of the Conservative government's 1980s privatisations, and listed its shares in 1987.

It left the stock market in 2006 when it was bought by a consortium led by Ferrovial.

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