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Dubai’s DP World in Talks for Hong Kong Tycoon’s Logistics Firm, Sources Say

Gantry cranes operated by Hongkong International Terminals Ltd., a unit of CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd.'s Hutchison Port Holdings Ltd., at the Kwai Tsing Container Terminals at dusk in Hong Kong, China, on Monday, March 13, 2023. CK Hutchison is scheduled to release earnings results on March 16.

Posted on November 13, 2023

DP World is in talks to acquire Cargo Services Far East Ltd. from Hong Kong tycoon John Lau as the Dubai port operator seeks to expand in Asia, according to people familiar with the matter.

DP World is working with a financial adviser on a potential offer for Hong Kong-based Cargo Services Far East, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. A transaction could value the company at about $800 million, the people said.

Deliberations are ongoing and the talks could still fall part, the people said. Other bidders could also emerge, they added. Representatives for Cargo Services Far East and DP World declined to comment.

Founded in 1989 by Lau, Cargo Services Far East’s businesses include ocean and freight shipping, cold chain logistics and fashion distribution, according to its website. Lau’s empire includes a majority stake in Hong Kong-listed CN Logistics International Ltd., which he is also executive chairman of. Cargo Services Far East has offices in 35 cities in China, Singapore, Brisbane, Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg and Los Angeles.

Lau has been considering options including a sale of his logistics assets amid interest from potential buyers, Bloomberg News reported in March. A transaction could involve a buyer for all of the assets or a piecemeal deal involving different companies, people familiar with the matter said at the time. For DP World, a deal could boost its presence in Greater China.

DP World was founded in 1972 as a local port operator in Dubai and has since expanded globally, counting more than 100,000 employees in about 75 countries, according to its website. Its services include freight forwarding, contract logistics, ports and terminals and marine services.

In Hong Kong, DP World has a joint venture with Goodman Group that owns a multi-story logistics center in the city’s Kwai Chung Container Terminals. Last year, the Dubai port operator signed an agreement to help develop a free-trade zone in Shanghai, China.


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