Under the agreement made between the two institutions, Stonepeak will hold 70% of the major interest, and Spirit Super will have a 30% stake
Stonepeak, the U.S investment group on Sunday announced its decision to acquire GeelongPort in Australia along with Spirit Super, an Australian financial service company to acquire 100% of Australia’s GeelongPort Pty Limited. The port is Victoria’s second-largest, located 75 kilometers southwest of Melbourne, and is within Victoria’s major provincial city Geelong.
The port is a major contributor to improving Victoria’s economy as it caters to the generation of more than 1000 job opportunities and operates trade worth 7 billion Australian dollars. The location of GeelongPort is ideal as it provides easy access routes easy for trade gaining rail, road, air, and channel connections for southwest Victoria and Geelong’s supply networks.
Under the agreement made between the two institutions, Stonepeak will hold 70% of the major interest, and Spirit Super will have a 30% stake. The long-term investment between both firms will support the port in continuing its efforts to improve and deepen its customer relations with significant clients and business partners.
The agreement between the firms will support the operations and long-term investment goals of the port. The GeelongPort includes 15 berths over two crucial areas, Lascelles Wharf and Corio Quay that provide infrastructure, land, and other facilities to promote trade for Victoria’s biggest businesses. The port also handles around 12 million tonnes of cargo, and more than 500 vessel visits annually.
GeelongPort thus has played an important role in Victoria’s economy with operations that includes private and public contracts like the Spirit of Tasmania operated by the TT-Line. Senior managing director at Stonepeak, Darren Keogh states that the port is a ‘highly contracted entity’ with ‘strong barriers’ to entry with robust demand which the firm considers as more persuasive when seen with the port’s opportunities for growth and to meet its import and export demand.
“We look forward to working closely with the GeelongPort team to help further their objectives and invest behind this integral component of the Victorian economy,” says Darren Keogh. The Consortium was advised by Gresham Partners acting as a financial advisor, Clayton Utz as a tax advisor, and King & Wood Mallesons as a legal advisor. The transaction is estimated to close towards the end of the first quarter of the year 2023, subject to customary regulatory approvals.
Spirit Super was founded in the year 2021 through the amalgamation of MTAA Super and Tasplan. As an industry fund, they are concentrated on growing membership in rural and regional Australia. Spirit Super has over 320,000 members and more than $20 billion in funds under management. “We are excited for what our investment will mean for the long-term growth of GeelongPort and pleased that members will now own a direct stake in one of Australia’s largest regional infrastructure assets” states Ross Barry, the Chief Investment Officer of Sprit Super. He further adds that the important investment focus has been regional Australia as the region has the potential to have longer-term growth.
Stonepeak is a leading alternative investment firm concentrating on real assets and infrastructure with nearly US$51.7 billion of assets under administration. The firm is headquartered in New York with offices in Hong Kong, Austin, London, Houston, and Sydney. Stonepeak sponsors investments focused on credit and private equity. Stonepeak aims to create value for its investors and portfolio companies and to have a positive impact on the communities in which it operates through investment in defensive, hard-asset businesses globally. The firm provides operational support, capital, and committed partnerships to sustainably grow investments in its target sectors, which include social infrastructure communications, transport and logistics, and energy transition.