Odfjell to sell Rotterdam terminal - damaged tanker goes to repair yard

Jul 06 2018

Odfjell Terminals (OTBV) is to sell its 100% ownership of Odfjell Terminals Rotterdam (OTR) and Odfjell Terminals Maritiem (OTM) for $155 mill net of estimated transaction costs to Dutch-based Koole Terminals.

In addition, Koole will compensate OTBV for all permitted equity injections made in 2018 until closing.


At the closing of the deal, Odfjell Terminals net debt will be reduced by around $35 mill. Odfjell's share of the proceeds is expected to amount to about $100 mill and result in an estimated book loss of around $100 mill.


The sale will be subject to the employee consultation procedures currently being finalised, finalising documentation and to customary regulatory approvals.


Meanwhile, Lindsay Goldberg’s (LG) exit process for the remaining shareholding in OTBV is still ongoing.


Kristian Mørch, Odfjell CEO, said: "This is a landmark transaction for us. We have been working hard to restore profitability at OTR during the past years, and the terminal is now ready for the next step of development, which will require significant investments.


“We are therefore pleased to have Koole as the potential purchaser. Koole has great ambitions for the terminal, and we are confident in their ability to realise the value potential this business represents.


“Following a sale of OTR, Odfjell will have a network of seven tank terminals worldwide. We remain committed to our tank terminals business and will allocate capital for growth of Odfjell Terminals in the years to come," he said.


Frank Erkelens, Odfjell Terminals CEO, added: "OTR is well positioned to continue with building a successful future on the fundaments of its strategic location in the Port of Rotterdam, its unique capabilities, its top quartile safety performance and its strong organisation.”


Elsewhere, work on the clean-up operations following the ‘Bow Jubail’ fuel oil spill in Rotterdam was making good progress on a number of fronts, it was claimed.


Earlier this week, daily inspections were being undertaken throughout the affected area, involving representatives from the harbour masters and other stakeholders. The inspections form the basis for further cleaning and priorities to secure that the overall process is as efficient as possible, Odfjell said in a statement.


The company’s insurers Gard has appointed HEBO, a specialist in controlling oil and chemical spills. HEBO was involved since the incident occurred, and has been supplied with extra resources to further speed up the process.


Environmentalist Sea Alarm’s reports are optimistic about the outcome of the actions that were taken to protect the wildlife in the area.


Handling of oiled wildlife is being administered and managed by the Dutch Rijkswatersaat (RWS). RWS is co-operating with Sea Alarm, international experts, animal rescue and bird protection organisations. RWS is recording the associated costs and will submit a claim from the liable party when a conclusion is reached, Odfjell said.


In co-operation with Gard, HEBO, the Port of Rotterdam and others, Odfjell said it was doing its utmost to avoid further interruption to the affected terminals. Until the waterways are fully cleared for traffic, intermediate solutions will be sought to mitigate the consequences for the industries in the area.


The cleaning facility for seagoing vessels has been moved to ensure the more efficient movement of vessels for cleaning and less time lost in bringing vessels in and out.


It is still too early to speculate on the cause of the incident, Odfjell said. There is a thorough ongoing investigation into the reasons behind the vessel hitting the berth at Botlek on 23rd June.


As part of the company’s co-operation with the external authorities to establish the relevant facts, its incident investigation team is conducting a thorough inspection, which in due time will determine the root cause. This team also includes independent external expertise.


The vessel was moved to a Rotterdam repair yard on 26th June. Repair work is estimated to take about a week. A class surveyor has attended the vessel for survey, and repairs will be conducted accordingly.


Odfjell’s emergency response team was still involved at the company’s Bergen headquarters to secure that all relevant issues are addressed. This includes continued co-operation with the local authorities, and support to the customers and the vessel’s crew.


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