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AXA Private Equity taps into oil storage company CLH Group

28 Feb 2011

French firm AXA Private Equity has acquired a ten per cent stake in Compañía Logística de Hidrocarburos (CLH), a Spanish oil storage and transportation specialist, in a deal valuing the company at €3.6bn.

The stake, acquired from Spanish service station operator DISA and representing the debut investment of AXA’s latest infrastructure fund, will position the firm as one of the largest stakeholders in CLH Group.

“The investment in CLH is consistent with our strategy to invest in core infrastructure assets, offering protection against inflation and low volatility,” said AXA PE’s head of infrastructure Mathias Burghardt.

The investment is AXA’s latest in Spanish infrastructure, following its takeover of toll road operator Autopista M-45 last year, in partnership with Spanish highway operator Abertis.

CLH is the owner and operator of the largest Spanish refined oil products pipeline network, with more than 4,000 km of pipelines, and is also the largest provider of storage capacity for refined products in the country, including some national reserves.

Listed energy group Compañía Española de Petróleos, one of CLH’s key customers, remains the largest stakeholder in the company, with a 14.5 per cent position.

“CLH has a low level of financial leverage and is well placed to benefit from an eventual economic recovery in Spain,” Burghardt added.
Last week, AXA sold flooring business Gerflor to Intermediate Capital Group.

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