LIVERPOOL, United Kingdom, Nov. 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — APG, Global infrastructure Partners (“GIP”) and AustralianSuper have agreed to acquire a 37.4% holding in Peel Ports Group from DWS. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022, pending regulatory review and approvals.
Peel Ports is a critical UK infrastructure asset with close proximity to major demand centers and is strategically positioned for Atlantic traffic. It is responsible for the operations and management of a network of seven strategically located ports around the UK and Ireland.
Mark Whitworth, CEO of Peel Ports Group, said: “Peel Ports Group has been at the forefront of the industry for over a decade in its delivery of growth and transformational infrastructure projects, which includes Liverpool’s L2 container terminal, the UK’s only “Northern” deep sea gateway. The ambitious partnership between shareholders and management has been a cornerstone of the Company’s success and we look forward to building on those achievements with our new like-minded Shareholders APG & GIP, alongside The Peel Group and AustralianSuper. I would like to thank DWS for their support, expertise and long-term vision that’s helped shape this highly successful business.”
Patrick Kanters, Managing Director Real Assets at APG, said: “The investment in Peel Ports, on behalf of our pension fund clients, represents an attractive opportunity to gain access to a high-quality, robust infrastructure asset with promising long-term growth potential. APG has been involved in Peel Ports since 2006 and we are pleased to convert our existing exposure into a larger direct investment. As a pension investor, we are constantly looking for attractive investments in infrastructure worldwide, to achieve stable and long-term returns for our pension fund clients and their participants. Peel Ports has a strong track record of growth, leadership and developing strong relationships with its customers and partners across the world. We are fully supportive of Peel Ports’ ambitions to continue to grow its UK footprint, whilst ensuring delivery of unparalleled service to its customers. We look forward to working with management and the other shareholders on this long-term partnership.”
Michael McGhee, GIP Partner, said: “GIP has deep experience and a strong track record of investing in and driving value from landlord ports. We regard Peel Ports as the premier landlord port company in the UK and a leader in the private ownership model for landlord ports globally. Peel Ports has a demonstrated track record of investing to support its customers’ businesses and of clear commercial decision making to deliver certainty to supply chain participants in the UK over many years. We look forward to working with management to help deliver further growth as well as efficiencies to its customers and the wider UK logistics market.”
Nik Kemp, AustralianSuper Head of Infrastructure, said: “Generating the opportunity to increase our ownership interest in Peel Ports to be the largest shareholder behind The Peel Group highlights the Fund’s desire to acquire high quality infrastructure assets as we aim to continue to grow the portfolio materially in the years ahead. Peel Ports is a high-quality infrastructure asset that has proven to be a resilient investment and continues to contribute positively to the retirement savings of our members. We look forward to Peel Ports leveraging its strong customer relationships, strategic locations and deep logistics management expertise to capitalise on new opportunities emerging from the favourable economic outlook and expansion of global trade. Introducing to the shareholder register two high quality global infrastructure investors in APG and GIP enhances the foundation of the company to deliver on its next exciting stage of growth.”
Hamish Mackenzie, Head of Infrastructure at DWS, said: “Peel Ports was our flagship investment for our Pan European Infrastructure strategy outperforming our original investment case. DWS’ active asset management approach has driven growth in the business, along with Peel Ports’ demonstrated resilience through economic cycles since acquisition. Having built a successful relationship with the management team of Peel Ports, DWS was able to oversee significant capital expansion projects, including the development of the L2 container terminal, and several cost efficiency and operational improvement programmes over the course of our ownership. This is a very positive outcome for our investors. We are convinced that given the investment profile and sector expertise of the new shareholders, both APG and GIP will undoubtedly provide sound and robust long-term support for the ongoing growth of Peel Ports.”
About Peel Ports
Peel Ports is one of the largest port operators in the United Kingdom handling c. 66m tons of cargo in 2020. The Company operates seven ports in England (5), Scotland (1) and the Republic of Ireland (1), benefiting from diversified geographical locations, cargo types, clients and ports. The company has an annual turn-over of £792 million and 1,500 employees. Visit our website: www.peelports.com
APG is the largest pension provider in the Netherlands. APG performs pension services on behalf of (pension) funds and employers in the sectors of education, government, construction, cleaning, housing associations, sheltered employment organizations, medical specialists, and architects. APG manages approximately €617 billion (October 2021) in pension assets for the pension funds in these sectors. APG works for approximately 22,000 employers, providing the pension for one in five families in the Netherlands (about 4.7 million participants). With approximately 3,000 employees, APG has offices in Heerlen, Amsterdam, Brussels, New York, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Beijing. APG has been an active infrastructure investor since 2004, investing approximately €20 billion to date and over €8 billion in the Transport. APG’s investments include assets within energy and utilities, telecommunications, and transport infrastructure. APG’s Global Infrastructure team comprises 38 investment professionals Further information can be found on APG’s website: www.apg.nl
About Global Infrastructure Partners
Established in 2006, GIP is one of the world’s leading specialist infrastructure investors. The funds and investment platforms managed by GIP make equity and debt investments in infrastructure assets and businesses in both OECD and selected emerging market countries, targeting investments in the energy, transport, water / waste and digital infrastructure sectors where GIP possesses deep experience and relationships. GIP has 10 offices around the world with major hubs in New York, Stamford, London, Sydney, Hong Kong and Mumbai. GIP manages over US$79 billion for its investors. Our funds own 40 current portfolio companies which have combined annual revenues of c. US$34 billion and employ in excess of 58,000 people. GIP is an experienced investor in both the UK and the ports sector globally. Further information can be found on GIP’s website at www.global-infra.com.
AustralianSuper manages more than AUD$233 billion (June 2021) of members’ retirement savings on behalf of more than 2.4 million members from around 360,000 businesses*. One in 10 working Australians is a member of AustralianSuper, the nation’s largest and best performing super fund over the long term. Further information can be found on AustralianSuper website at www.australiansuper.com
DWS has been investing in infrastructure assets since 1994. The global platform – which provides client solutions covering private equity infrastructure, debt and separate account mandates – gives investors access to such economic sectors as transportation, utilities, telecommunications, and other service sectors critical to the basic functioning of local and global economies. As part of the Alternatives platform, the direct infrastructure business holds almost €15 billion in assets under management (June 2021) and more than 40 infrastructure investment professionals. With 25+ years of direct infrastructure experience, DWS employs a disciplined investment approach and aims to deliver superior long-term risk adjusted returns, preservation of capital and diversification to its investors, which include governments, corporations, insurance companies, endowments, and retirement plans worldwide.
About The Peel Group
The Peel Group is a leading investor in infrastructure, transportation and real-estate in the UK, with collective investments and assets under management of more than £5 billion. Further information can be found on The Peel Group website at www.peel.co.uk