Bunge joint venture expands in ocean freight

by Jeff Gelski
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WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — Augustea Bunge Maritime, Ltd., a joint venture between Bunge Ltd. and Augustea Atlantica S.p.A., itself has entered into a joint venture that will operate an independent fleet of ocean-going, dry-bulk vessels. Augustea Bunge Maritime Ltd. and York Capital Management have formed the new joint venture, called ABY Holding Ltd.

A fleet for ABY Holding Ltd. already includes two ships that are in service. The new joint venture also owns three more ships that are under construction at Japanese shipyards. Koert Erhardt, managing director of Augustea Bunge Maritime Ltd., will lead ABY Holding Ltd., which will be based in Malta, a European country in the Mediterranean Sea.

“This is a truly unique opportunity to draw on the complementary resources and skill sets of Augustea, a world class ship owner, Bunge, a leading global agribusiness, and York, a top tier investment firm,” Mr. Erhardt said.

York Capital Management, a global investment management firm, has primary offices in New York, London and Hong Kong. Augustea Atlantica S.p.A., a privately-owned group based in Italy, is involved in deep-sea shipping. Bunge Ltd., a global agribusiness and food company based in White Plains, N.Y., has about 35,000 employees in more than 40 countries.

“Through these partnerships in vessel ownership, Bunge continues to expand in ocean freight and further develop our insights into the global supply chain, which is an integral part of our core business,” said Giovanni Ravano, managing director of Ocean Freight and Global Logistics at Bunge Ltd.

Drew Burke, chief financial officer for Bunge, Ltd., spoke about the importance of ports during the BMO Farm to Market Conference May 15 in New York. He said Bunge Ltd is involved in a joint venture port in Longview, Wash., owns a port facility in the Ukraine and should have a port operational in Bunbury, Australia, in 2014.
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