Yildirim plans sale of stake to support growth

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Yildirim plans sale of stake to support growth

Yildirim Holding AS, a family-owned Turkish company with global interests in mining, transportation and energy, has announced plans to sell a stake in its ports unit, Yilpor Holding AS.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. was hired by the company to find a financial investor to take a stake of 20 percent to 30 percent in Yilport Holding AS. The unit operates six container ports in Turkey, Malta and Sweden, and is worth about US$2 billion.

The transaction could have a value between US$400 million to US$600 million. The company said that the new funds would be used to support its  rapid pace of acquisitions.

Chairman Yuksel Yildirim stated:

We want to use the proceeds from the stake sale in other port investments either through acquisitions or rehabilitation of the existing ports. We want to create a group of companies with a total market value of US$30 billion by 2023.

According to sources, the company reported that is in talks with infrastructure funds and sovereign pension funds including a few from Canada and the Netherlands.

In June 2011, the privately-owned Turkish group acquired a 50% stake in CMA CGM's Malta Freeport for €200 million. In 2012 Yilport expanded its portfolio by acquiring RotaPort, located at a distance of 80 kms from Istanbul and 320 kms to Ankara.

The company bought a 24 percent stake in CMA CGM SA, the world's third-largest container shipper, for a total of US$600 million in 2010 and 2011.

In late May 2014, we reported that Yilport acquired 80 % of shares in Gävle Container Terminal (GCT) in Sweden. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

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