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Gatwick need no longer be seen as London’s second airport, according to Simon Edwards, Gatwick’s airline business development manager.
Speaking to ABTN at the opening ceremony for Gatwick’s new North Terminal extension, he said he is “enjoying a new lease of life” in his role under the new ownership.
Global Infrastructure Partners bought the airport from BAA in 2009, after the competition commission ruled the UK’s largest operator had to sell off some of its assets.
Edwards said that under its former owners Gatwick was seen as the “problem second child”.
New owners GIP are looking to unleash the potential of the airport, he said.
Edwards sees the airport's affluent South East catchment area, direct rail links to central London and The City, as well as the new facilities and improved service, as key selling points when it comes to attracting new carriers to Gatwick.
The airport has recently attracted Air Asia X, Hong Kong Airlines and Vietnam Airlines to base services there.
Edwards said Gatwick is actively seeking out other new long-haul markets which wouldn’t have come into consideration before the takeover, especially into what he sees as the currently underserved region of South America.