Dubai’s DP World is set to acquire Johannesburg-listed Imperial Logistics in a deal worth $890 million. A deal that would bolster the Dubai port operator’s footprint in Africa. DP World is the world’s largest operator of marine ports and inland cargo terminals, stretching from gateways in London and Antwerp to hubs in Africa, Russia, India and America.
The acquisition expected to close by the first quarter of 2022 has already skyrocketed shares in the South African company by almost 34 per cent in early trade. The privately-held company offered 66 rands per share equivalent to a 40 per cent premium to Imperial’s last close. The shares surged as much as 36 per cent on Thursday, trading just below the offer price.
The proposed acquisition is set to spur the Dubai company’s plans to evolve into an advanced logistics company offering end-to-end supply chain services. It has been on an acquisition spree as it attempts to become a more diversified, integrated logistics company. Imperial’s acquisition is the second this month after the recent buyout of the supply chain solutions provider Syncreon Holdings Ltd. last week for an enterprise value of $1.2 billion.
“The acquisition of Imperial will help DP World build better and more efficient supply chains for the cargo owners, especially in Africa,” said DP World Group Chairman and CEO Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem. “Imperial’s operations are complementary to our network of ports, terminals and logistics operations on the continent.”
The deal will be funded from DP World’s existing available resources, the company said.
“Imperial’s business strongly complements DP World existing footprint in Africa and Europe,” the Dubai-based company said, adding that the deal demonstrates long-term confidence in the South African economy and the wider regional market despite recent challenges.
DP World also continues to look for ways to cut debt and is considering offering international investors a chance to buy into the Jebel Ali Free Zone, a prized asset that helped transform Dubai into a hub of global trade, people familiar with the matter have said.