InterBulk goes Dutch for £42.1 million

Aim-quoted chemicals transportation firm InterBulk is being taken over by Dutch logistics major Den Hartogh in a £42 million agreed deal, it was announced yesterday.

Interbulk chairman David Rolph welcomed the move. Picture: Contributed
Interbulk chairman David Rolph welcomed the move. Picture: Contributed

It came as tough trading in Europe saw InterBulk, where Scottish billionaire engineering entrepreneur and Clyde Blowers‑owner Jim McColl is a non-executive director, unveiled flat underlying profits of £3.2 million in the year to end-September.

David Rolph, chairman of InterBulk, which has a strong presence in East Kilbride, said the takeover would mean the combined business “will have the scale and global reach necessary for long term growth and success.

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“The two groups have similar culture and this provides a strong platform for successful integration.” Pieter Den Hartogh, managing director of the Dutch company, said: “Together we will be able to grow our business successfully in the worldwide markets, in which scale and global reach are increasingly important success factors.”

InterBulk shareholders will get 9p in cash for each share they hold, the price being a 125 per cent premium to the closing price of 4p on Tuesday, the last trading day before the announcement.

The firms said the transaction was expected to complete in the first quarter of 2016.

Loek Kullberg, InterBulk’s chief executive, warned last month that annual profits were likely to be flat amid challenging trading conditions in Europe “as competitors seek to maintain equipment utilisation due to a period of lower growth”.