One of the biggest corporate deals in global harbour towage has been completed creating a strong competitor in northern Europe tug operations
Boluda Corporación Marítima subsidiary Boluda Towage has successfully closed the €300M (US$330M) acquisition of the joint venture Kotug Smit Towage (KST).
This consolidates its position as the leading European operator in the towing sector. This transaction extends its towage operations and maritime safety management services in the main ports of the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and the UK.
KST was the joint venture between Kotug International and Royal Boskalis group providing towage services in four European countries.
Boluda obtained the corresponding regulatory approvals in all of these countries and signed the agreement with representatives of KST on 24 July in Rotterdam with the transaction taking effect from 31 July.
The acquisition goals are to consolidate Boluda Towage’s future prospects, strengthen its position as a European tugboat market leader, to open up new opportunities and boost innovation.
The purchase will also provide greater employee security and offer personal and professional development opportunities to seafarers within the consolidated business.
By acquiring KST, Boluda Towage is adding 67 tugs to its fleet. It has increased its presence in the following major European ports:
Boluda Towage will also strengthen its position in the towage sector in Germany, specifically in Hamburg and Bremerhaven, where it has been operating since 2017 since its acquisition of German enterprise Urag.
Boluda group built its business through acquisitions and newbuilding construction in the Americas, France, the west coast of Africa and the Indian Ocean.
With the KST vessels, Boluda operates a fleet of more than 300 tugboats and provides towage in 90 ports in 15 countries in Europe, the west coast of Africa, Americas and the Indian Ocean.
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