Marquard & Bahls Looks Back on a Challenging Year 2020
2020 saw drastic changes around the world as a result of the Corona pandemic. In this severe and still ongoing crisis, the Marquard & Bahls Group reacted promptly and introduced far-reaching measures to protect the health and safety of its employees, while the operating units working in system-relevant areas continued to provide their services reliably.
Tank Storage Logistics – Oiltanking Realizes a Good Result
Oiltanking achieved an operative result well above budget in 2020, driven in part by the contango situation. Individual sites experienced lower demand for tank space and correspondingly fewer product movements given the economic downturn. Highlights included the commissioning of Europe's largest butane tank at Oiltanking AGT in Antwerp, Belgium, and the go-live of the Oiltanking MOGS Saldanha tank terminal in South Africa.
Energy Trading – Mabanaft Experiences an Eventful Year
Mabanaft exceeded its targets for 2020 despite a challenging market environment. After a turbulent start to the year, the trading business later stabilized, but earnings remained disappointing, while the retail companies OIL! Tankstellen and Petronord generated record results. To better meet market requirements, a new strategy was introduced at the end of 2020 with ONE Mabanaft, based on three business units: Supply, Infrastructure & Trading, Marketing, and New Energy, Chemicals & Gas.
Aviation Fuelling – Skytanking Suffers Sharp Drop in Sales
Skytanking experienced a drop in sales of up to 70 percent due to the global travel restrictions. A significant recovery of the airline industry is not expected for several years, so Marquard & Bahls decided to look for a strategic partner that could better support Skytanking in the long term. This was found in PrimeFlight at the end of 2020. Going forward, Marquard & Bahls will hold a minority stake in PrimeFlight and indirectly participate in Skytanking.
Investments in Gas and New Energies
In line with its objective of building new portfolio pillars, Marquard & Bahls acquired a stake in Superior Plus, a Toronto-based, publicly traded energy company active in the distribution and marketing of propane products and the sale of liquid fuels, in 2020. Marquard & Bahls held a minority interest of over 10 percent at year-end 2020 and 16 percent in April 2021.
Marquard & Bahls has also decided to further expand its minority stake in Nordic Electrofuel, one of the pioneers in power-to-liquid, which it acquired at the end of 2019. A corresponding agreement, which provides for a higher shareholding and equity financing, was signed in October 2020. The first e-fuel plant is under construction at Herøya Industrial Park in Porsgrunn, 150 km southwest of Oslo. Marquard & Bahls will continue to take an active role in the long-term development of the company.
The Marquard & Bahls Group will keep driving forward the transformation of its portfolio, including at the level of the operating units. The portfolio as a whole is to become more diversified and more sustainable, especially in the gas, chemicals, and new energies sectors. At the same time, the organization will also be further transformed: The holding company is being streamlined and will act as a strategic architect in the future, while the operating units will run their businesses independently. This follows the objective of building an agile organization capable of making decisions rapidly, in order to be able to operate successfully in the long term.
Marquard & Bahls AG is an agile, independent holding company in the energy & chemical sector. Its core lines of business include tank storage logistics and energy trading. Through its subsidiaries, Marquard & Bahls has a presence in 29 countries in Europe, America, Asia and Africa and employs around 4,300 people. www.marquard-bahls.com