The Portek International group [P09] is a Singapore stock exchange listed all-in-one integrated services provider of global port solutions. Its three key divisions are port operations and management, port engineering, and port IT and automations solutions. At present, Portek employs about 1600 employees in 23 places around the world including Asia, Europe, Russia, and the Middle East.
Larry Lam founded Portek in 1988, initially focusing on port engineering and crane upgrading services. He saw an opportunity to provide services for and to market Bromma spreaders in the midst of rapid growth and expansion of the port business and of PSA Singapore. Thus Bromma Far East and at the same time Portek Systems were formed. Spurred on with 20%-30% growth each year, they expanded to provide port engineering support activities. As the company took on larger and larger projects, they became a contractor for used and surplus equipment which they relocated, sold and leased to third parties. In the late 1990s, ports offered investment of their equipment in exchange for equity in the ports. Thus forming their evolution into port operations as a key business operation.
On 28 March 2002, Portek International was listed on the Singapore Exchange. Chairman and Managing Director: Larry Lam Choon Seng
Executive Director: Tok Soon Chong
Executive Director: Ooi Boon Hoe
Independent Director: Chan Tuck Hoi
Independent Director: Wong King Kheng
Independent Director: Lee Chee Yeng
In 2000, Lam devised a long-term strategy of focusing on small to medium-size feeder terminals in emerging markets, rather than focusing on mature, large-scale hub operations which larger port operators could afford to compete in. Portek’s main focus is on 50,000TEU to 500,000TEU capacity gateway ports/terminals.
Portek operates seven feeder ports in Asia and Africa capable of handling a total of 800,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU), which contributes to over 70% of the company’s revenue.Tanjung Priok Jakarta T009: capable of handling up to 450,000 TEUs
Tanjung Priok Jakarta T300: capable of handling up to 300,000 TEUs
Banten, Java: Portek holds a 20-year concession for its operation
In November 2007 Portek gained a 25-year concession to operate two ports in Gabon, making them the first Singapore-based company to be granted a concession to operate ports or terminals in West Africa.Port Owendo: a multi-purpose port near the country’s capital of Libreville.
Port Gentil: 160 km south of Libreville, it handles much of Gabon’s oil exploration and production activities.
Portek holds a 30-year concession for the island’s original port, now named Valletta Gateway Terminals. The port has a capacity of 200,000 TEUs and handles conventional cargo, cars, RORO and containers.
Portek holds a 20-year concession to jointly operate the Bejaia Mediterranean Terminal SPA (BMT) in Algeria with Algerian Port Authority. BMT can handle up to 300,000 TEUs and is the only terminal in northern Africa that has modern quayside cranes.
Portek, through its 100% owned subsidiary, Portek East Africa Terminals Limited, acquired a controlling stake in Magasins Generaux de Rwanda S.A. (MGR), the operator of Rwanda’s main dryport which serves as a main gateway for imports and exports.
The engineering aspect of Portek focuses on mobilisation, modernization and modifications of used cranes, along with sales, leasing and distribution of components and parts (Straits Times, 2010). This arm accounts for 28.5% of the group’s revenues in 2010.
As at May 2011, its total order book for port engineering projects dispersed around the globe, including countries like Algeria, Iraq, Indonesia, Thailand and its base Singapore, amounted to about $44 million.
Portek’s IT division provides a whole range of IT & Automation solutions including Container Terminal Management Software, Vessel Traffic Management System, etc. for improving port productivity and efficiency.
On 2 June 2011, Portek International Ltd made front page news in The Business Times Singapore due to an unsolicited cash offer of S$1.20 by the Philippine listed post operator ICTSI for 100% of its shares. This represented a 69% premium over the last traded price, which was highest offer premium compared to other acquisition offers in Singapore, in recent times.
The company made headlines again when, on 9 June 2011, they released an announcement on the Singapore Exchange that there was a third party interested in making an offer to the company. Following the announcement, the Securities Industry Council stepped in with a deadline for the interested party to make its intentions clear: 50 days from after the ICTSI provides its offer document to Portek.
On 13 July 2011, Portek International Ltd announced that Mitsui & Co. had made an offer of S$1.40 for all Portek shares, representing a 17% premium than the offer of S$1.20 made by ICTSI. The deal values Portek at S$213.5 million is said to be in line with Mitsui’s plans to expand its transportation logistics business in emerging markets. The acquisition will allow Mitsui immediate access to Portek’s 8 terminals. Portek’s chairman and directors along with key shareholders who collectively made up 50.05% of the company’s shares had signed an irrevocable undertaking to sell their shares at the offer price of S$1.40.
After extending its offer to 10 August 2011 from the initial closing date of 20 July in to evaluate its options, ICTSI withdrew its initial offer on 1 August 2011
A formal offer was made by Mitsui & Co. on 27 July 2011. As of 2 August 2011, Mitsui & Co. owned 73.81% of the total amount of Portek International’s shares.