After low initial bids prompted a second round of offers, Greece’s privatisation agency selected a preferred bidder for its sale of 67 percent of the Thessaloniki Port Authority.
The consortium – comprising Deutsche Invest Equity Partners, Cyprus-based Belterra Investments and CMA CGM-subsidiary Terminal Link – bid €232 million for the port. That topped offers by International Container Terminal Services and Peninsular and Oriental Steam, the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund determined.
HRADF, the agency tasked with the privatisations, estimated the agreement’s total value at €1.1 billion. This includes a required €180 million in improvements over the first seven years of the concession, which will run until 2051, and more than €170 million in expected government revenues. HRADF said the bid “signals a new era for the Port of Thessaloniki, the prospects of economic development of Northern Greece and the country as a whole”.
The agency first received bids in March from the same three consortia, but turned them down and asked bidders to come back with better offers. The deal is subject to the approval of the Greek authorities.
The government has looked to privatise the port since 2014, as Greece seeks to comply with the terms of a bailout deal made with the EU and IMF. The privatisation programme, which also includes several utilities, marinas and regional airports, has been slowed but not halted by political opposition.