Shuaa now has an expanded role in the region's maritime services space through the Allianz buy. Image Credit: WAM

Dubai: Dubai fund manager fancies its prospects in the maritime space, having completed the leveraged buyout of Allianz Marine and Logistics Services. This follows the receipt of a $160 million seven-year acquisition finance facility from National Bank of Fujairah and Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (Apicorp).

Allianz operates 117 owned and chartered OSVs (offshore service vessels) in the Middle East, including a combination of platform supply vessels, anchor handling tug supply vessels, crew boats, accommodation barges, and flat barges. The company also provides vessel chartering, port logistics, and crew services to clients that include oil companies and offshore construction contractors.

This is Shuaa’s second big buy of a marine services firm; last year, it acquired Dubai-based Stanford Marine Group via a $1.13 billion debt deal. "We thank our banking partners NBF and Apicorp for their continued support on this acquisition finance transaction," said Jassim Alseddiqi, Group CEO of Shuaa Capital, on the Allianz transaction.

With this acquisition, SHUAA’s managed fund includes the largest portfolio of 152 offshore supply vessels in the region and the fourth largest such fleet in the world. Shuaa expects the combination of Stanford and Allianz to ‘deliver significant revenue and cost synergies and economies of scale on an annual basis’.

For NBF, this is the second deal it has had with Shuaa for a marine services company buyout. “Not only is this a testament to the strong relationship we have built with Shuaa, it also reflects our confidence in Allianz's strengths to capitalize on growth opportunities in the offshore oil and gas sector, which is a priority sector for us," said Neill Robertson-Jones, Head of Corporate Banking at National Bank of Fujairah.

How the Allianz Marine deal was structured
The $160 million facility is one of the largest Secured Overnight Funding Rate (SOFR) based facilities of its size for an leveraged buyout transaction in the region.

Allianz’s financing is also one of the few corporate credit facilities in the Middle East with term-SOFR as the benchmark pricing. As part of the transaction Shuaa also procured for its managed fund a seven-year IRS from NBF, opting to hedge the interest rate risk.