The new arrangements - which ends the local borough council's complete ownership of the airport - will also pose interesting challenges for brand-new finance director Phillip Adams, who has joined the airport from the Hilton hotel group, where he worked for the past nine years in a number of financial roles, most recently as vice president finance for the UK.
The airport says the new terminal has been opened to cater for the increasing number of passengers using the airport. They have risen from 1.9 million in 1995 to around 5 million today.Under the traditional private finance initiative, private sector companies carry out the construction of a building which will be occupied and operated by a public sector company.
The arrangement with Luton involves the council and a consortium of investors. Luton will continue to own the freehold of the building but the actual airport business is owned by the consortium, London Luton Airport Operations, for at least 30 years.Lead player in the consortium is Barclays bank which, equally through its private equity arm and its UK Infrastructure business, has a total 65% of the airport's operations. Other shareholders are AGI, with 25% and Bechtel Enterprises with the remaining 10%.The new terminal cost £40m but the total investment in the airport has been around £85m, since there has also been extensive refurbishment of the original terminal building as well as new aircraft stands and parallel taxiing. 'It's a unique deal,' says Brian Smith, a director of Barclays Private Equity. In his new role as finance director, Adams will be responsible for the financial control of the business and will have 24 staff reporting to him. He will also sit on the board of the airport operations company.
Molybdenum ditelluride is a two-dimensional material that can be easily stacked into multiple layers to create a memory cell
New light-guiding nanoscale device can control and monitor a nanoparticle trapped in a laser beam with high sensitivity
Optical traps are scientific instruments in which a focused laser beam is used to exert an attractive or repulsive force on a microscopic object to hold it in place
Scientists estimate that the exoplanet has already lost up to 35 per cent of its mass over its lifetime
The observations were made using the Atacama Array in the Chilean desert