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NPIL sticks to Powell Duffryn disposal programme

Nikko Principal Investments Limited (NPIL) has announced the divestment of a further two divisions of Powell Duffryn, the port services and engineering company it acquired a year ago for £509 million. These deals, worth a total of £23.7 million, are the fourth and fifth engineering divisions to be sold, bringing the total value of Powell Duffryn disposals to over £141.7 million.

John Soden, non-executive chairman of Powell Duffryn, said: “These disposals are another positive step in the disposal programme and we are very pleased that both transactions have been secured. The divestment process over the last 12 months has underpinned our strategy.”

Powell Duffryn has sold the Dry Cargo Handling division of Hamworthy KSE to Norwegian company, TTS Technology, which supplies deck equipment for the marine and offshore industry. The division, sold for £12.5 million, designs and supplies RoRo equipment and hatch covers, including bow doors, stern doors, ramps and car deck equipment. The company is based in Gothenberg, Sweden with offices in Germany and China. It employs 158 staff and generated revenues of £26 million in the year to March 31, 2001.

NBGI Private Equity, the €100 million fund backed by the National Bank of Greece, has acquired Hamworthy Heating for £11.2 million. The company specialises in the design and manufacture of commercial heating equipment and is based in Poole, UK, where it employs 140 people. For the twelve months to March 31, 2001 it reported revenues of £17 million.

After the public-to-private of Powell Duffryn in December 2000, NPIL announced its intention to dispose of the company’s engineering divisions and focus on its ports and shipping business. In accordance, it sold JIP to Dan Foss in June 2001, the Geesink Norba Group to Oshkosh Trucks Corporation in July 2001 and Hamworthy Belliss & Morcom to the Gardner Denver Inc group in September 2001. Not yet divested are Hamworthy Combustion Engineering, the Marine & Offshore and Liquid Cargo divisions of Hamworthy KSE. In April NPIL structured a securitisation of the ports business, which raised £305 million.