DP World acquires Danish container feeder company

08 August 2018
DP World expects to close the $767m deal in the fourth quarter of 2018

Dubai-based ports operator DP World has acquired Danish firm Unifeeder Group for €660m ($767m) from Nordic Capital Fund VIII and other minority shareholders, the company announced on 7 August.

Unifeeder reported revenues of €510m in 2017.

The acquisition is subject to regulatory approvals and expected to be “earnings accretive in the first full year after completion.”

DP World said existing balance sheet resources will finance the acquisition. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018.

MEED understands Unifeeder operates the most densely connected, common user container feeder in Europe, as well as a growing short sea network that serves both deep-sea container hubs and the intra-Europe container freight market.

According to DP World CEO Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, the acquisition “supports our strategy to grow in complementary sectors, strengthen our product offering and play a wider role in the global supply chain as a trade enabler."

The executive cited Unifeeder’s strong reputation in Europe, and added that the deployment of ultra-large container vessels has made high-quality connectivity from hub terminals crucial for their customers.

DP World has signed several investment transactions over the past few months.

In late July, DP World signed a 20-year concession agreement to develop a 1,000-hectare logistics hub outside of Bamako, the capital city of west African country Mali.

The first phase of the project will require an estimated $50m in investment for the construction of  an inland container depot and container freight station facility. Construction is expected to start in 2019 and take approximately 18 months.

In June, DP World confirmed details of the planned expansion of its container terminal at Canada's Port of Prince Rupert.

The next phase of expansion, labelled Phase 2B, will increase annual capacity to 1.8 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) from its current capacity of 1.35 million. Construction will begin mid-2019, with completion scheduled for 2022.

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