Gunvor Group, one of the world’s major independent commodity trading companies, has announced that it has signed a purchase agreement to acquire the assets of Petroplus’ refinery in Ingolstadt and related German marketing activities.
The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory clearance from competition authorities. The closing of the transaction is expected in the third quarter of 2012, with the support from the local and German state authorities. Gunvor intends to restart operations as soon as possible, following the refinery’s closure in early February as a result of Petroplus’ financial situation. The Ingolstadt refinery is one of the best performing European refineries, with a strong regional footprint in one of Germany’s most prosperous regions, Bavaria. It has a processing capacity of approximately 100,000 barrels per day.
Gunvor is committed to operating the refinery on a long term basis and all existing employees, more than 400, will be retained.
The purchase of the refinery is in line with Gunvor’s infrastructure investment programme and its stated strategy to become vertically integrated. In this context, the acquisition of the Ingolstadt refinery and related marketing activities confirms the group’s footprint in Europe by developing a strong presence in Germany.
Torbjorn Tornqvist, CEO of Gunvor Group, commented: “Just a few weeks after the successful reopening of the recently purchased Antwerp refinery, we are delighted to have signed a purchase agreement for what will be again a key asset for Gunvor as we look to confirm our presence in Europe and diversify our trading activity in Germany. This will be achieved with the proven integrated business model and the strong German wholesale and consumer marketing force.”
Insolvency administrator Dr. Michael Jaffé commented following the unanimous approval of the transaction by the creditors’ committee: “We have achieved our goal to secure the survival of the refinery and all the jobs. With Gunvor as a strong partner, we believe we found a sustainable solution for the benefit of all parties. Also for the creditors in the insolvency proceedings we will most likely achieve a very good result.”