TSH already owned a majority stake in Géosel following the acquisition of a 50.01% stake in the company from Total in 2015. With this latest transaction, TSH now owns 76.7% of Geosel, alongside Petroineos Manufacturing France (19.9%) and Total (3.4%). The exiting shareholder, Basell Polyolefines France, will continue to use Géosel’s infrastructure for its own needs.
With a capacity of almost 9 million cubic meters, Géosel owns a critical site for the management of French national oil reserves. The company is based in Manosque, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence (France) and operates underground storage caverns and related pipelines linked to the seaport of Fos, Marseille (France), and the petrochemical facilities of Etang de Berre (Fos, Lavera, France).
TSH, alongside its co-shareholders, aims at preserving the company’s operational excellence and will pursue its long-term development as one of the most important and best performing sites in the sector in Europe.
Commenting on the closing of the deal, Guillaume d’Engremont, Managing Director of EDF Invest and Mathias Burghardt, Head of Ardian Infrastructure, said: “We are very pleased, through TSH, to further strengthen our investment in Géosel and to reinforce our long-term commitment to the sector.”
Starting with the acquisition of a 50% stake in Géosel Manosque SAS (“Géosel”) from Total in December 2015, TSH has been established as an investment platform in the storage and transportation of liquid hydrocarbons in Europe and potentially outside of Europe, benefiting from the strong support of both Ardian and EDF Invest in the long term.
Its board of directors is comprised of investment team members of Ardian and EDF Invest that have been involved in the execution and asset management of oil midstream storage assets in multiple countries across Europe, as well as industry veterans and experts with up to 30 years of experience in the transportation and storage of hydrocarbons sector.
Ardian, founded in 1996 and led by Dominique Senequier, is an independent private investment company with assets of US$65bn managed or advised in Europe, North America and Asia.
The company, which is majority- owned by its employees, keeps entrepreneurship at its heart and delivers investment performance to its global investors while fuelling growth in economies across the world. Ardian’s investment process embodies three values: excellence, loyalty and entrepreneurship. Ardian maintains a truly global network, with more than 470 employees working through twelve offices in Paris, London, Frankfurt, Milan, Madrid, Zurich, New York, San Francisco, Beijing, Singapore, Jersey, Luxembourg.
The company offers its 610 investors a diversified choice of funds covering the full range of asset classes, including Ardian Funds of Funds (primary, early secondary and secondary), Ardian Private Debt, Ardian Buyout (including Ardian Mid Cap Buyout Europe & North America, Ardian Expansion, Ardian Growth and Ardian Co-Investment), Ardian Infrastructure, Ardian Real Estate and Ardian Mandates.
ABOUT EDF INVEST
EDF Invest is the unlisted investment arm of EDF’s Dedicated Assets, the asset portfolio which covers its long-term nuclear decommissioning commitments in France. EDF Invest manages a portfolio of over €5bn equity investments through three asset classes: infrastructure, real estate and private equity.
In addition to TSH, the existing infrastructure portfolio includes stakes in RTE (the French electricity transmission company), Thyssengas (the third largest gas TSO in Germany), Aéroports de la Côte d'Azur (the second largest French airport operator, owned in partnership with Atlantia), TIGF (a gas transport and storage company operating in the South-West of France), Madrileña Red de Gas (the operator of the main gas distribution network in the region of Madrid), Porterbrook (one of the three main rolling stock owning companies in the UK) and Autostrade per I’Italia (the largest toll motorway concession asset in Europe).
Géosel owns the Manosque underground storage facility in southeastern France and pipelines linking the facility to the oil ports in Fos and Lavéra, also in the same region.
With a capacity of close to 9 million cubic meters, Géosel’s underground liquid hydrocarbon storage facility is one of the largest of its kind in Europe. It represents about 20% of France’s total hydrocarbon storage capacity and is primarily used to store around 40% of the country’s strategic reserves.