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AD Ports Group acquires Noatum for $660mn

Investment offers exposure to maritime business in Mediterranean region and port facilities in Spain

AD Ports Group acquires Noatum for $660mn
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An aerial view of one of Noatum’s facilities

AD Ports Group has acquired Spain-based Noatum, a global integrated logistics platform with a presence in 26 countries, for AED 2.5 billion (€660 million/$660 million).

The last twelve month (LTM) revenue and EBITDA of Noatum was €1.80 billion and €145 million, respectively. The total purchase consideration (Enterprise Value) for 100 percent ownership implies an LTM EV/EBITDA of 4.6x, says an official release. "This value and earnings accretive acquisition, which significantly broadens AD Ports Group's global footprint and positions it among the leading logistics and freight forwarding companies in the world, will be fully funded through a new acquisition loan."

Noatum will lead AD Ports Group's logistics cluster, consolidating the company's existing logistics offering into its operations, the release added.

This will be AD Ports Group's third major international acquisition in 2022 following the acquisition of a 70 percent equity stake in Transmar and TCI in September, and the acquisition of an 80 percent equity stake in Dubai-based Global Feeder Shipping (GFS).

Noatum operates in three business areas – logistics, maritime, and port terminals – with market-leading positions in Spain and Turkey and a significant presence in the U.S., U.K., China, and Southeast Asia, the release said.

"Noatum's global Logistics business specialises in comprehensive freight management, project logistics, contract logistics, international supply chain management, customs, and e-solutions with offices and a wide network of agents around the world. In particular, Noatum has advanced capacities in heavy lift logistics, which AD Ports Group aims to bring to the region.

"The company's terminals operations include 15 Ro-Ro, dry bulk, general cargo and container terminals in Spain, supported by highly professional management, while its maritime division provides shipping agency services, including outsourcing and ancillary services, and cargo services, such as liquid bulk, breakbulk cargo, reefer and dry cargo."

The company, which employs more than 2,600 professionals, provides tailored multi-modal transport solutions, comprehensive logistics services, and advanced port operations across its key markets, and aligns well with AD Ports Group's integrated business model, the release said.

"AD Ports Group continues to extend our global footprint through value-adding acquisitions and partnerships with market leaders," says Falah Mohammed Al Ahbabi, Chairman, AD Ports Group. "This ambitious acquisition brings a major global logistics platform into the AD Ports Group family, significantly enhancing our global connectivity and extending the range of maritime, logistics and ports solutions we can offer as we continue to pursue a determined strategy for growth. This acquisition makes AD Ports Group one of the most significant global players in the finished vehicle logistics, which we intend to expand in our home and core markets."

Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, Managing Director and Group CEO, AD Ports Group, adds: "We thank the leadership of the UAE for their guidance and support for this historic acquisition, which is set to be one of the most significant in the industry this year. Bringing Noatum into our integrated network of businesses will add scale and new layers of expertise, supporting both our global ambitions and our contribution to economic diversification within the UAE. Noatum operates an asset-light model with a high cash conversion rate and will make an immediate contribution to our financials, at the same time as positioning us for international expansion. We will leverage the acquisition of Noatum to build a strong international logistics brand with deep roots in this region."

Subject to regulatory approvals, the transaction is expected to close in H12023. As part of the transaction, Noatum's management is locked in for a period of three years to ensure smooth integration, the release added.

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