Ardian makes third dollar deal with bulk storage buy

Australia’s State Super and Sunsuper are exiting their stakes to the French firm, which made its debut Americas investments last September.

Ardian has agreed to acquire 35 percent of LBC Tank Terminals from Aussie funds State Super and Sunsuper, making it the largest shareholder in the bulk liquid storage business.

The company was previously controlled by Dutch pensions APG and PGGM, which will retain their entire 32.5 percent stake upon completion of the deal. No value was disclosed for the acquisition. Ardian declined to comment, while State Super and Sunsuper could not be reached before press time.

LBC operates storage facilities for chemicals, oils and refined petroleum products with a total capacity of 3 million cubic metres. Headquartered in Belgium, its terminals are spread across Europe, Asia and the US. Its largest operations are located on the US’s Gulf Coast, at Houston and Baton Rouge.

“LBC is at a significant transition point in its business strategy, in particular as the business shifts its focus toward expansion of its facilities in USA and Europe. This trend has been identified by Ardian and we value the experience and support they can provide,” said Walter Wattenbergh, the company’s chief executive.

The transaction marks yet another reshuffling of the company’s shareholder base, a 66.2 percent stake of which was acquired from Challenger Infrastructure Fund by the current owners for $277.8 million.

Today’s deal is the third US dollar-denominated investment by Ardian, after the firm purchased three Chilean solar plants and one in Peru in September.