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GLP hits back at criticism of sales process

The Singapore-listed logistics specialist says it remains in discussions with shortlisted bidders after a report suggested private equity groups are pulling out.

Global Logistic Properties insists discussions are ongoing with shortlisted bidders for the Singapore-listed logistics investment manager, despite reports that “almost all” of the potential buyers “are dropping out.”

The Financial Times report said that Blackstone, KKR, RRJ and TPG have decided against making offers due to concerns that a consortium bid led by GLP’s chief executive Ming Mei, which includes Hopu Investment Management, Hillhouse Capital Group and China Vanke, has an unfair advantage.

In a stock exchange announcement, GLP said that it, alongside its advisor JPMorgan, remained in discussions with shortlisted bidders. PERE previously reported that Blackstone and Asia logistics group e-Shang Redwood – which counts Warburg Pincus, APG and Equity International as shareholders – launched bids, as well as the Mei consortium.

PERE understands that KKR and TPG were never on GLP’s shortlist.

Responding to criticism that the process unfairly favored Mei’s bid, GLP said the review was being undertaken independently and measures were in place to alleviate potential conflicts of interest.

A special committee in charge of evaluating offers is in the process of accepting firm proposals by the shortlisted bidders until June 30. The special committee consists of four independent directors and is chaired by Seek Ngee Huat, chairman of the GLP board.

GLP said all its directors with a conflict or a potential conflict of interest have recused themselves from decisions relating to the strategic review.

“The objective of the strategic review is to maximize value for all shareholders, which is why we are singularly focused on ensuring that the process is conducted in a fair and independent manner,” said Seek.

A GIC spokesperson added: “GIC expects all our investee companies and their boards to act in accordance with applicable laws and regulations and to have appropriate corporate governance practices.”

Bidders have signed non-disclosure agreements and the parties contacted by PERE declined to comment.