The CLH General Shareholders’ Meeting approves the delisting of the company’s shares
- CLH continues to develop its international projects in the Sultanate of Oman and the United Kingdom
- The CLH Group has updated its Strategic Plan 2012-2016 to adapt it to the new economic circumstances and its international expansion plan
- CLH profits in 2014 reach EUR 157 million and oil product deliveries grew by 0.7% from the previous year
- Profit after tax during the first five months of 2015 rose by 12.6%, coming to EUR 66 million
- The General Shareholders’ Meeting approved an additional dividend payment totalling EUR 38.2 million
The CLH Group General Shareholders’ Meeting today approved the delisting of Class A and Class D company shares from the Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao and Valencia Stock Exchanges by submitting a takeover bid.
The shares targeted by this proposal represent 2.54% of CLH's total capital, 1.69% of which belongs to shareholders that have expressed their desire to block their shares, with a mere 0.85% distributed amongst minority shareholders. This means that only 598,789 company shares are now listed out of the total of seventy million fifty-eight thousand four hundred and fifty shares that CLH possesses.
The company will pay EUR 39.46 per share, a price that is 27.7% higher than the average listed price per share in 2014 and 5.5% higher than the share price on the date the takeover bid was announced.
Once the operation is approved by the General Shareholders’ Meeting, both the price and prospectus will be subject to authorisation by the CNMV.
The Chairman of CLH Group, José Luis López de Silanes, explained that “even if the shares are delisted in the end, the company will maintain its commitment to transparency in line with current legislation, its CSR policy and its Code of Conduct, and it will meet all the specific obligations arising in relation to the type of activities it performs”.
International Expansion Plan
During the General Shareholders’ Meeting, López de Silanes also detailed the internationalisation strategy that the company has consolidated in 2014 and 2015 through the development of major projects in Oman and the United Kingdom.
In Oman, CLH has set up a joint venture with Orpic, officially known as Orpic Logistics Company (OLC), which will invest 320 million dollars to provide the Sultanate with a new oil product transport and storage system.
“The project consists in the construction of a new storage facility on the outskirts of Muscat, as well as a 300-kilometre network of multi-product pipelines that will connect this new plant to the country's two refineries and the international airport”, he added.
Work began last May, and the project is scheduled to be operational in the second quarter of 2017. The main contractor is the Omani company GPS, which will receive support from the Spanish companies, Abantia and Diseprosa.
In the United Kingdom, in turn, the company recently acquired GPSS, an important oil product transport and storage system formerly owned by the British Defence Ministry, as the successful bidder in the call for proposals by the Government of the United Kingdom, with a bid of 82 million pounds.
This logistics network is composed of 2,000 kilometres of oil pipelines and 16 storage facilities with one million cubic metres' capacity, which serves Defence facilities and major airports in the United Kingdom, including Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Manchester.
In order to manage and operate these assets, CLH has created a new company called CLH Pipeline System (CLH-PS) Limited, which is based in London and staffed by nearly eighty people.
The Chairman stressed that “through this operation, CLH has increased its oil pipeline system by 50%, which means that the company now manages the largest refined product network in Europe, with a total of 6,000 kilometres of pipelines”.
Revised Strategic Plan 2012-2016
The consolidation of this internationalisation plan, compounded by the perspectives for growth of the Spanish economy, has led the CLH Group to revise its Strategic Plan 2012-2016, which includes forecasts up to 2018, to adapt it to the new circumstances of the company and the current scenario.
López de Silanes emphasised that “the updated Strategic Plan approved by the Board of Directors continues to spotlight enhancements in efficiency with the aim of further increasing profitability and sustainability at the company”.
According to the latest forecasts, demand in Spain for gasoline, kerosene and diesel oil will grow at an average annual rate of 2.1% in the next few years and product deliveries from the company's facilities to the Spanish market will see similar growth rates, bringing the output volume in 2018 to more than 43.8 million cubic metres.
With this growth horizon, in addition to the new assets attained, the updated Strategic Plan forecasts that the company's EBITDA will reach an accumulated figure of EUR 1,607 million between 2012 and 2016, which represents a 5.6% increase over the initially forecasted figure. Furthermore, for 2017 and 2018, the forecasted EBITDA figure is in the vicinity of EUR 358 million in 2017, with a similar figure for 2018.
Within this scenario, CLH expects to improve its profit figure, obtaining EUR 806 million in profit after tax between 2012 and 2016, which represents a 10.5% increase over initial estimates. For 2017 and 2018, forecasted profits would reach EUR 192 and 195 million, respectively.
At the same time, the company will not only maintain the scheduled investments but will also increase them by EUR 166 million for the 2012-2016 period. Thus, investments under the Strategic Plan come to EUR 500 million, some 300 million of which are earmarked for projects in Spain and the rest will go to the development of the international operations in Oman and the United Kingdom. For the two extended years in the Plan, 2017 and 2018, investments will be in the vicinity of EUR 140 million.
2014 financial year
CLH's Chairman presented the company's activities and results in 2014 to the shareholders. During this period, oil product deliveries from CLH's facilities came to a total of 40.1 million cubic metres, 0.7% more than in the previous year.
This increase in activity gave rise to operating income totalling EUR 575.4 million, which is 0.2% more than in 2013, whereas operating expenses dropped by 1.9%, coming to EUR 342.2 million, thanks to the cost containment plan implemented in recent years. As a result of these improvements seen in income and expense items, EBITDA grew by 2.2% compared to 2013, reaching a total of EUR 314.5 million.
Overall, the CLH Group's profit after tax came to EUR 157 million, which is 4.4% less than the previous year, due to the balance sheet restatement effected by the company in the preceding year. If these tax effects had not been included, profit for 2014 would have been 4.2% higher.
The company invested more than EUR 60 million in 2014, which represents a 30% increase over the previous year's figure. Of this amount, almost 70% was allocated to the upkeep of existing infrastructures.
15% of the remaining investments were put toward new infrastructures, such as the new facility that the company is building in the port of Bilbao and the new pipeline between the San Fernando de Henares-Torrejón de Ardoz plant and Adolfo Suarez-Madrid Barajas airport, in addition to initial work in the Oman project.
In 2014, the company also stepped up its Corporate Social Responsibility activities, achieving important recognition, such as the renewal of the European Excellence Seal 500+, with a score of more than 600 points, and the Silver Class Sustainability seal granted by the ratings agency, RobecoSAM, which gave CLH the second highest score worldwide amongst companies in its sector.
January – May 2015 Results
López de Silanes announced that the CLH Group had earned EUR 66 million in profit after tax in the January – May 2015 period, which is 12.6% higher than that earned in the same period last year.
Operating income reached EUR 232 million, 3.1% higher than the same period in 2014. Operating expenses, in turn, dropped by 0.1%, coming to some EUR 135 million. As a result of these improvements, EBITDA grew by 5.3%, reaching EUR 129.9 million.
Regarding details on business activity, oil product deliveries from CLH's facilities came to 17 million cubic metres between January and May 2015, a 5.4% increase over the amount in the same period the previous year.
Other resolutions by the General Shareholders’ Meeting
The CLH General Shareholders’ Meeting held today also approved the proposals for resolutions presented in relation to the points on the meeting agenda, which include approval of the annual accounts, the directors' report and annual report on remuneration for the board members, as well as the dividend payment totalling EUR 38.2 million, which, in addition to the interim dividend already paid, exceeds EUR 161.4 million.
The Meeting also approved the ratification, appointment and reappointment of board members Rajaram Rao, Deepak Kumar Agrawal, Gary William Pritchard, Luis Alberto Aires Dupré, Carlos María Olazábal Estecha, Thaddeus Austin Thomson, Mohamed Anwar Khamis Al Lawati and Global Ramayana, S.L.