Adani to buy a deepwater port in Andhra for $1.9 bn

Adani to buy a deepwater port in Andhra for $1.9 bn

Indian billionaire Gautam Adani

By Ronojoy Mazumdar

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd. agreed to acquire a deepwater port on India’s east coast for an enterprise value of $1.9 billion, a move that will help the nation’s biggest port operator by market capitalization expand capacity by 64 million metric tons.

Adani Ports will purchase 75% of Krishnapatnam Port Co. in India’s Andhra Pradesh state, it said in an exchange filing on Friday. Adani Ports, controlled by billionaire Gautam Adani, will buy the stake from the existing shareholders of Krishnapatnam Port with cash and internal resources, according to the statement.

“We expect the payback period for the money we are investing will be about four years,” Deepak Maheshwari, chief financial officer and head of strategy at Adani Ports, said in a coference call. “Krishnapatnam port has a diverse set of customers, which broadens the overall profile.”

The deep-draft Krishnapatnam Port, which can load 1,200-feet long Panamax-size ships, helps Adani Ports get closer to its target of having 400 million metric tons of capacity and reviving revenue growth. Sales in the year to March 31 dropped for the first time since it first sold shares in 2007.

Adani operates 10 ports and terminals in India and handles more than 350 million metric tons of cargo a year, according to its website. The company had bought Dhamra Port Co. in 2014 at an enterprise value of 55 billion rupees ($766 million.)

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