LATRAPS becomes a partner in a dry bulk cargo terminal in the port of Riga
The largest agricultural company in the Baltics has become a partner in a dry bulk cargo terminal in the port of Riga, planning to handle up to one million tons in the first year
A year-long deal has been concluded this week, and the Agricultural Services Cooperative Company LATRAPS has acquired a 50% + 1 share in the dry bulk cargo terminal “Alpha osta”.
Ansis Zeltins, the Freeport of Riga CEO, said:
“LATRAPS entry into the Freeport of Riga means that the port is developing. Investments of local farmers in the capital of “Alpha osta” provide a solid basis for further development, facilitated by the change of cargo structure in the Freeport of Riga. Due to those changes the port company, which had been initially developed as a mineral fertilizer transshipment terminal, was repurposed to grain handling. Now it is evident that “Alpha osta” has successfully coped with this transformation challenge.“
So far, all necessary measures have been implemented at the terminal to maintain high quality in grain handling. Current infrastructure of the “Alpha osta” includes specialized grain storage bunkers, an automated transportation and ship loading system, facilities to accommodate Panamax vessels, and a powerful rail infrastructure.
Edgars Ruza, Chairman of the LATRAPS Board, commented:
“LATRAPS strategy has always been aimed at developing its processing sites on railway access roads. There are many benefits to this. We can deliver 3 thousand tons to the port by railroad train, which is significantly more than by road. In addition, there is less cargo traffic load on roads and cities. Therefore, the fact that the “Alpha osta” has a well-developed railway infrastructure was one of the main advantages that we took into account when assessing the possibility to expand our operation in the port of Riga.”
“Throughput capacity of the “Alpha osta” exceeds 20 thousand tons per day and the total grain storage capacity exceeds 100 thousand tons, which is initially sufficient and appropriate for grain handling, but in the future the company is planning additional investments to increase this capacity.
“Due to the fact that the global demand for grain is currently high, we plan to invest in our storage capacity in the coming years. In terms of current projects, some warehouses are currently equipped with scales to ensure more precise loading control. In order to prevent dust, we are investing in the installation of aspiration systems, which will effectively clean the air from dust generated during the grain handling process.”
A globally widespread, but rarely used in Latvia method of attracting financing - a closed bond issue - has been used for the terminal acquisition. LATRAPS members were offered to buy bonds in the amount of five million euros. Farmers' investments and trust in the company ensured the success of the transaction.