Greece has announced deadlines to receive investment bids for the sale of a 67% stake of Piraeus Port Authority S.A. (OLP) and a 67% stake of Thessaloniki Port Authority S.A.
The deadline to bid for the Port of Piraeus is set for October this year and the deadline to bid for the Port of Thessaloniki for February next year.
Piraeus Port is one of the busiest passenger ports in Europe, according to OLP data, and one of the top cargo ports in the Mediterranean. Cargo traffic rose 15% to 3.1 million twenty-foot equivalent units in 2013. The preferred bidder will acquire 51% in OLP with an option to acquire 67% in five years. The acquisition option is subject to a €300 million (US$343.5 million) investment in the port during that period.
In May this year we reported that three bidders will bid for the Piraeus Port: APM Terminals B.V., COSCO (Hong Kong) Group Limited, and International Container Terminal Services, Inc, (ICTSI).
Ports America Group Holdings, and Utilico Emerging Markets Limited were among the 5 shortlisted companies but they had pulled out of the bidding.
Thessaloniki Port facilities include a conventional port, container terminal, passenger terminal, duty free commercial area and others. Services provided include unitized and conventional cargoes, coastal shipping and cruise liner passengers, ship anchoring, mooring and berthing, as well as car parking lots and links with the road and railway network.
In July last year eight investors qualified to bid for the Thessaloniki Port: APM Terminals B.V., International Container Terminal Services, Inc, (ICTSI), Deutsche Invest Equity Partners, GmbH, Duferco Particiption Holding, SA, Mitsui & Co., Ltd., P&O Steam Navigation Company (DP World), Russian Railways JSC / GEK TERNA S.A., and Yilport Holding, Inc.
China is one of the key players bidding for Greece's port assets. According to Baker & McKenzie and the Rhodium Group, China has invested US$18 billion in the country during 2014, which represents a substantial increase from the US$2 billion in 2010.
These privatizations are part of the Greece's privatisation programme, which aims to raise around €6.4 billion (US$7.33 billion) by 2017.