Adani acquires Dhamra Port for close to US$ 1 billion
In a recent development, Gautam Adani-led Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone scooped up the strategic Dhamra port on the east coast of India for US$ 940.41 million.
The company signed a definitive agreement to buy the port, from a 50:50 joint venture of Tata Steel and Larsen & Toubro, on a day when Narendra Modiled Bharatiya Janata Party won a massive mandate in the general elections.
The deal, culminating after over one-and-a-half years of negotiations, is the largest port sector deal in India after the 2005 acquisition of Pipapav Port in Gujarat by APM Terminals from SKIL Infrastructure.
Dhamra port, one of the deepest ports in eastern India, was awarded the rights by the Odisha government in 2004 to develop and operate for 30 years. The contract can be extended for two additional periods of 10 years each.
The port commenced operations in 2011 from two fully mechanised berths capable of handling coking coal, steam and thermal coal, limestone and iron ore. In Fiscal 2014, Dhamra handled cargo of 14.3 million tonnes. It also has 63 km of private rail connectivity.
For Adani, this has been a long, patient wait but it is perfectly aligned to his aspirations of becoming a large player across both the east and west coasts of the country with a string of private ports. The Bombay Stock Exchangelisted Adani Ports and SEZ is 75 percent owned by Adani Enterprises, the flagship of Adani group. The company owns and operates five ports, of which three— Dahej, Hazira and Mundra—are in Gujarat.
Chairman, Adani Group