Rumours of a major equity acquisition by DP World Russia in the Russian carrier FESCO have resurfaced as the Middle Eastern Gulf terminal operator refuses to confirm or deny that such a move is imminent.
A spokesman for DP World told Container News that a number of enquiries had been made over the issue of the company buying shares in the carrier, but he added “DP World does not comment on rumours.”
Even so the Dutch shipping weekly news and statistics publication, Dynaliners, reported again this week that, “DP World Russia, a joint company of Dubai-based stevedore DP World and Russian Direct Investment Fund, has signed a Letter of Intent to acquire a 49% stake in Russian carrier FESCO.”
According to Dynaliners a request for permission to acquire the shares has been lodged with Russia’s “Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS), transport and economic development ministries as well as the government’s analytical centre,” for DP World to invest in the region of US$350 million in the Port of Vladivostok, which includes the main container terminal.
FESCO’s main shareholder Summa Group/Ziyavudin Magomedov (32.5%) clearly spoke out against selling its stock holding. In late December 2019, FESCO decided to end the rumours by posting a denial.
The statement read, “Given the recently spreading speculations (sic) and rumours regarding the changes in shareholders of FESCO Transportation Group ("FESCO"), Mr. Ziyavudin Magomedov, FESCO co-owner, announces that he is not going to sell his stake in the company categorically.” Even so the rumours persist.
FESCO’s other shares are in the hands of GHP Group (23.8%) and TPG Capital (17.4%), while another 26.3% is owned by other shareholders or in free float.