The high flyers

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POSSIBLE bidders to take over Edinburgh Airport include:

* A consortium of Scots businessmen, including former Edinburgh Airport boss Richard Jeffrey, who went on to run trams firm TIE, and investment banker Ben Thomson. They are understood to have held talks with potential investors.

* Abertis, a Spanish firm which owns Belfast and Cardiff airports, as well as Luton through its subsidiary TBI. It has previously expressed interest in Gatwick and Leeds-Bradford.

* Manchester Airport Group, publicly owned by the ten local authorities of Greater Manchester. The largest UK-owned airport operator, it also owns East Midlands, Humberside and Bournemouth airports.

* Vancouver Airport Authority, which manages 19 airports worldwide through its subsidiary Vancouver Airport Services.

* Fraport, a German transport company which operates Frankfurt Airport and has interests in several others around the world.