Thursday, October 23, 2014

Dennis McVicker, president & CEO of Tidewater Holdings, Inc., announced today new joint ownership with Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners, in which Tidewater Holdings remains operating partner for its two subsidiaries, Tidewater Barge Lines and Tidewater Terminal Company. Stonepeak, a middle-market infrastructure investment firm with a focus on power, renewable energy, utilities, transportation and water, replaces Portland based Endeavour Capital as the major equity investor in Tidewater. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

"The Tidewater management team is excited about our new partnership with Stonepeak," said Dennis McVicker. "When considering investment partners and strategic plans for the company, the management team's top priority is to ensure our customers continue to see the same high-quality service that Tidewater has delivered for 80 years." He added, "Not only will our employees have continued job security, but we also expect this partnership will allow us to pursue new business opportunities that will benefit both the company and the region."

Tidewater, founded in 1932, has evolved into a multi-commodity transportation and terminal company serving the diverse and evolving transportation needs of the Pacific Northwest. Headquartered in Vancouver, WA, the company's operating area spans 465 miles on the Columbia & Snake River system extending from the Port of Astoria on the Oregon coast to the inland Port of Lewiston in Idaho.

"Tidewater is the premier inland marine transportation company in the Pacific Northwest," said Michael Dorrell of Stonepeak Partners. "This partnership provides us with a unique and exciting opportunity to add an outstanding company to our investment portfolio. We look forward to being a part of Tidewater's legacy and growth."

The Tidewater management team envisions this partnership as an opportunity to maintain its longstanding priorities and guiding principles while also pursuing new business opportunities resulting from the growing export market. "Tidewater remains committed to a high level of business ethics and integrity and our focus on safety, environmental protection, regulatory compliance and customer service," added McVicker.

Today's announcement marks the end of a successful seven-year business relationship between Endeavour Capital and Tidewater. During this partnership, Endeavour supported management's plans to reinvest in the fleet, transport new commodities, and make a strategic acquisition.

"Tidewater is a company with a tradition of leading customer service on the Columbia-Snake River system," said Stephen Babson, Managing Director of Endeavour Capital. "We have been proud to be partners with their management and employees as the company went through a period of significant growth and renewal.  Tidewater is well positioned now to grow as bulk inland commodities try to find their way to the coast, providing employment and opportunity for people in our region."

"It's been a pleasure working with Stephen Babson and the entire Endeavour team for the past seven years," said Dennis McVicker.  "We thank them for positioning the company to continue its long-standing tradition of serving the Pacific Northwest for many years to come."

Wells Fargo Securities served as exclusive financial advisor and Tonkon Torp LLP served as legal advisor to Tidewater in conjunction with this transaction.

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