Syd Airport deal on hold: report

AustralianSuper Fund consortium puts takeover on ice as target's shares lift.

The AustralianSuper Fund has been forced to put a planned takeover of Sydney Airport (SYD) on hold as its shares strengthen with increased demand for safe infrastructure assets and plans to lift its foreign ownership threshold, The Australian Financial Review reports.

According to the newspaper, the super fund board, acting with the Kuwait Investment Authority and other Middle Eastern sovereign wealth funds and Canadian pension funds, was interested in a deal when the airport's shares were trading at around $3 earlier this year.

The stock's 25% rise since January makes a deal difficult in the short term and shareholders may expect more than $4 a share, according to the AFR.

The airport's holding company last month moved to lift its foreign ownership threshold from 40% to 49%.

The consortium has not submitted a proposal to the airport's largest shareholder Macquarie Group, which would need to consent to a takeover, the AFR reports.