Aéroports de Paris and GMR Airports Infrastructure Ltd. agreed to fold their joint-venture company into GMR, giving ADP a liquid stake in a business that owns airfields in India.

ADP and GMR Airports Infrastructure own 49% and 51%, respectively, of the unlisted GMR Airports Ltd., according to a statement Sunday from the French company, which operates Paris’s Charles de Gaulle and Orly. 

Combining GMR Airports Infrastructure and GMR Airports will simplify the capital structure of the unlisted company, allowing the combined entity to more easily capture new business, the companies said.

The merger will take place in the first half of 2024, the companies said. ADP would hold a 45.7% stake in the combined GMR Airports Infrastructure and GMR Airports. 

“Demand for air travel has picked up substantially, which will speed up airport privatization initiatives of the respective governments across the world,” GMR said in a separate statement. 

The merged company, “with an improved balance sheet, will be in a much stronger position to further scale up the airport business by judiciously participating in profitable opportunities mainly in India, South Asia, Southeast Asia and Middle East.” GMR’s portfolio includes airports in Delhi and Hyderabad. 

ADP will invest €331 million ($353 million) in foreign currency convertible bonds issued by GMR Airports Infrastructure, with the proceeds used by the Indian company to clear its balance sheet by repaying corporate debt and also settling a major part of its liabilities. The investment will lead to a cash expense of the same amount in the coming weeks, ADP said.

The deal is in line with ADP’s strategy of selective international growth, and the French company confirmed its objective for net financial debt to be 3.5 to 4.5 times earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization in 2025. It also confirmed its dividend policy of a 60% payout ratio on earnings for 2023-2025, with a minimum of €3 a share.