APG, GIP and AustralianSuper to acquire minority stake in Peel Ports

APG, Global infrastructure Partners and AustralianSuper have agreed to acquire a minority stake in Peel Ports Group from DWS.

APG, Global infrastructure Partners and AustralianSuper have agreed to acquire a minority stake in Peel Ports Group from DWS. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022. No financial terms were disclosed. Peel Ports is a UK-based infrastructure firm.

PRESS RELEASE

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