UPDATE 2-Spain kicks off Aena share sale in test of investor confidence
* Biggest Spanish privatisation since 1997
* Price per share expected at 43 euros to 55 euros each
* Sale to test confidence in Spain's economy (Adds prospectus approval, details)
By Elisabeth O'Leary
MADRID, Jan 23 (Reuters) - Spain has given the green light for the sale of a stake in airport group Aena (IPO-AENA.MC: Cotización), kicking off its biggest privatisation since 1997 and testing investor faith in the country's economic recovery in an election year.
Shares in the world's largest airport operator are expected to sell at 43 euros to 55 euros ($51-$62) each, the prospectus said, valuing the whole of Aena at 6.45 billion to 8.25 billion euros, as reported by Reuters on Thursday.
They will trade for the first time on Feb. 11 after a 49 percent stake, or 73.5 million shares, are sold to institutions and individuals, according to the prospectus published after the government gave its final nod on Friday.
The final price per share will be set on Feb 9.
"This is a prime asset, there is demand, but it's all a question of price," a source at one of Europe's largest pension funds said. Continuación...