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Australia's DP World sells 75% ownership to US Fund

Australia's DP World sells 75% ownership to US Fund

Sydney: DP World Australia, an offshoot of the Dubai World Investment Fund has announced the sale of 75% ownership of its downunder port operations to Citi Infrastructure Investors for US$1.49 bn. DP World confirmed it will keep its current 2,100 staff and continue managing container ports in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide and Brisbane under the deal. The transaction is expected to be finalised early in the new year, subject to regulatory approval. According to recent reports, DP World's five Australian port facilities currently handle in excess of 3.5m teu a year, equivalent to about 50% of the total container market in that country.

A DP spokesman revealed that the sale of a majority ownership stake in its Australian operations will reduce the company's reliance on its current activities, given the inroads into DP's market share surge being made by rival Hutchison Port Holdings.

"This is a strategic partnership that allows us to continue to operate in Australia while monetising some of our shareholding and allowing us to reduce our net debt," DP World Chief Executive Officer Mohammed Sharaf stated.

  Sharaf said DP World had no plans to sell its remaining 25% stake in the Australian operation.

One of the largest marine terminal operators in the world with 50 terminals and 11 new developments and major expansions across 31 countries, DP World last year handled more than 43.4m teu across its portfolio from the Americas to Asia.  [23/12/10]

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