Aspo’s ESL Shipping acquires AtoB@C
Finnish conglomerate Aspo’s fully owned company ESL Shipping will acquire all the outstanding shares of Sweden-based AtoB@C Shipping and AtoB@C Holding.
The enterprise value of AtoB@C is 30 million euros. Aspo will mainly finance the final purchase price from its own reserves, and it will cover approximately 4.2 million euros with the proceeds of a new share issue.
AtoB@C operates 30 vessels with a capacity of 4 000–5 000 tonnes, which mainly carry forest and steel industry raw materials and products, as well as recyclable materials, biofuels and minerals. The company owns six of the vessels in full and has a 49 per cent share in two of them, whereas the remaining 22 vessels are time-chartered.
“Aspo’s strategy is to develop leading companies in its field,” says Aki Ojanen, CEO of Aspo and chairman of the board of directors of ESL Shipping. “The acquisition will shift ESL Shipping to a new size class and put it in a good position to improve operational efficiency and overall profitability of the shipping company.”
In 2017, AtoB@C posted an operating profit of 3.2 million euros and net sales of 79.3 million euros, which would increase ESL Shipping’s net sales to approximately 160 million euros. Its cargo volume would also increase to approximately 16–17 million tonnes.
The acquisition still needs approval from the Finnish competition authority, but the transaction is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2018.