Canada’s CPPIB to buy Ports America from Oaktree to further infrastructure push

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(Businesshala) – The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) said on Wednesday it has agreed to buy Ports America, one of the United States’ largest marine terminal operators, from investment firm Oaktree Capital Management LP.

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While no valuation was given in the announcement statement, the deal values ​​Ports America at more than $4 billion, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

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The transaction comes amid growing interest in logistics, with supply-chain disruptions in focus as the global economy recovers from the paralysis caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

“There are a lot of tail winds for logistics assets, but our outlook is long-term and so these types of strategic port assets will be important to the US for decades to come,” said Scott Lawrence, head of infrastructure at CPPIB. Said in an interview.

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Under the terms of the deal, which is expected to close by the end of the year, Canadian pension manager Ports America will take full ownership.

CPPIB previously held a 9.4% stake in Ports America. The pension fund holds a 34% stake in Associated British Ports, as well as in toll roads, utilities and digital infrastructure providers in the US, Europe, Asia and Australia, according to its website.

Alternative asset manager Oaktree has controlled Ports America since 2014, when it acquired Highstar Capital and infrastructure-focused investor funds, which included the Jersey City, New Jersey-based port operator.

“Ports America’s track record of growth, innovation and strong financial profile position the company for success in today’s cargo management and terminal operations environment, and we fully expect that the business will only benefit from this new ownership structure.” will be,” said Emmett McCann, managing director and co-portfolio manager of Oaktree’s infrastructure investment strategy.

Founded over a century ago, Ports America has operations at 70 locations in 33 ports in the United States. It currently handles 13.4 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) annually, including 10 million tons of cargo, 2.5 million vehicles and 1.7 million cruise ship passengers.

Reporting by Sohini Poddar in Bengaluru and David French in New York Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri and Matthew Lewis

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