Dutch-German duo to acquire majority stake in Italy’s LNG terminal

Dutch energy infrastructure company VTTI and Germany-based international asset management group IKAV have formed a consortium to acquire the majority ownership of Terminale GNL Adriatico, also known as Adriatic LNG, in Italy.

Illustration; Source: VTTI

Adriatic LNG operates the regasification terminal located 15 kilometers off the coastline of the Veneto region in Italy, which has a technical regasification capacity of 9.6 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year. This is approximately half of Italy’s current liquefied natural gas (LNG) import capacity and can supply approximately 14% of the country’s national consumption of natural gas.

As reported by VTTI, Italy is the second largest gas consuming country in the European Union, so the partners intend to enhance security of energy supply by ensuring seamless operations and continuous support to Adriatic LNG. The transaction is expected to be closed in the second half of 2024.

The two companies have indicated having long-term strategic plans for the terminal and expressed their willingness to further explore growth opportunities in the country. VTTI will be in charge of the operational side of energy terminals and infrastructure, while IKAV brings to the table its experience in managing and operating renewable and conventional assets.

The majority stake of 70.7% in the Adriatic LNG terminal is currently held by ExxonMobil Italiana Gas, a subsidiary of U.S.-based ExxonMobil, while the minority owners are Qatar Terminal Company Limited, a subsidiary of Qatar Energy, with a 22% stake, and Snam Spa, with a 7.3% stake.

In October 2023, it was reported that the U.S. energy giant had selected the compatriot investment company BlackRock as a potential buyer for its majority stake in Adriatic LNG. However, a final agreement on the terminal, said to be valued at about €800 million, had not been reached at the time. 

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At the end of last year, VTTI signed a similar agreement aimed at enhancing energy security in the Netherlands with the Norwegian owner and operator of LNG carriers and floating storage and regasification units (FSRUs) Höegh to study options to develop and operate the Zeeland Energy Terminal in the Vlissingen port area. Expected to become operational in 2027, the terminal would be based on an FSRU and have an annual throughput capacity of up to 7.5 billion cubic meters.