Dockwise's Owners Agree to 3i Buyout

Offshore services company Heerema Group and Norwegian maritime group Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA said that they have agreed the buyout of Dockwise Transport N.V., the Dutch heavy transportation company based in Breda, to 3i, a global leader in private equity, and funds managed by 3i. The deal is valued in excess of US$700 million.

"Both shareholders are extremely pleased with the transaction and believe that 3i is the best fit for guaranteeing continuation of the Dockwise organization and business," say Nico Pronk, CFO of the Heerema Group and deputy CEO Sjur Galtung in Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA.

Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. has advised Heerema and Wilh. Wilhelmsen on exploring strategic alternatives and the sale process. The sale is motivated by the fact that both Heerema and Wilh. Wilhelmsen wish to focus on their respective core businesses.

Dockwise is the world-wide market specialist in heavy-lift transportation for the marine and oil and gas industry. It has a fleet of 15 semi-submersible vessels, of which four are specialized yacht carriers. With a versatile fleet of vessels, Dockwise offers clients unparalleled flexibility and transport capacity on even the most complex of projects.

"Dockwise is a market leading business, recognized by its customers as offering a highly flexible and bespoke service. We are attracted by its growth prospects, its highly recognized brand and its highly qualified people. It is the type of company we want in the 3i portfolio. This investment is a great fit with both our sector and local presence in the Benelux and builds on our impressive track record in the oil, gas & power sector," comments Graeme Sword, 3i's head of Oil, Gas & Power team.

3i is retaining the current management team in Dockwise, led by CEO AndreGoedee.

"This is an exciting time for Dockwise. The Heerema Group and the Wilh. Wilhelmsen group have been strong shareholders in the company and 3i is well placed to take the reigns and continue supporting our strategy for continued growth and development," summarizes Andre Goedee, CEO of Dockwise.

The Heerema Group and Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA have owned 76% and 24%, respectively, of Dockwise.