Success stories from the frontline of state aid
Fight or flight.
Result State aid clearance achieved at several European airports
Ryanair is one of the brands that has turned the airline industry on its head. Offering low-cost flights reduces margins to unprecedented lows, requiring a shift not only in the business model, but in airport locations.
Over the last four years, the European Commission has been conducting state aid investigations in relation to agreements signed between Ryanair and at least 25 European airports, covering agreements made as far back as the late 1990s.
Under current state aid rules, a negative result for Ryanair would have cost more than a substantial price in repayment of funds, as well as damages from competitors and the airports themselves.
In the course of these investigations, Oxera has prepared several reports that have been submitted to the European Commission. In these reports, we demonstrate that, based on sound economic and financial analysis, Ryanair’s arrangements at these airports are in line with the market economy operator principle. We also participated in several working sessions with the Commission during these investigations.
To date, Oxera has helped Ryanair to obtain clearance for 98% of its value at risk (on the basis of traffic volume implicated by the Commission’s investigations). In particular, we have helped Ryanair achieve state aid clearance at Aarhus Airport (Denmark), Alghero Airport (Italy), Charleroi Airport (Belgium), Hahn Airport (Germany), Marseille Airport (France), Niederrhein Airport (Germany) and Västeräs Airport (Sweden).