Criteria involved in the evaluation of the nominees included the scope of distribution in the tourism industry, user-friendliness as well as general quality standards of products and services.The World Travel Awards were initiated in 1993 by the London-based media group World Travel Awards Ltd (www.worldtravelawards.com). The awards intend to acknowledge, reward and celebrate outstanding achievement in all sectors of the global tourism industry. Each year more than 150’000 representatives of the tourism industry participate in an internet survey to elect the winners. This year’s nominated European airports were Amsterdam, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Moscow/Domodevo, Hamburg, London/Heathrow, Rome/Leonardo da Vinci, Madrid, Munich, Paris/Charles de Gaulle and Zürich Airport.
Unique (Flughafen Zürich AG) is a diversified company that operates Zürich Airport under concession of the federal government. In 2007, the company, which receives no subsidisation, employed a staff of approximately 1,400 with whom it generated a total revenue of 802.9 million Swiss francs and reported a profit of 130.7 million. While the majority of the share capital is in private hands, 33.3 percent is held by the Canton of Zürich, and 5 percent by the City of Zürich.Zürich Airport is Switzerland’s gateway to the world. In 2007, a total of 20.7 million passengers departed from, arrived at or transferred via Zürich Airport, thus making it not only the region’s most important transport hub, but also its most highly-frequented shopping and services centre. Approximately 270 companies operate at the airport, where they provide jobs for almost 21,000 people.