With roots dating back to 1923, Hili Company maintains a strategic focus on the maritime and logistics industries. In parallel, it is also building a solid and prestigious portfolio of businesses in renewable energy and real estate. The group is captained by Marin Hili who developed and piloted the highly successful businesses which make it up and put the group on a path of strategic expansion.
As a recognised player in the port terminals and logistics business in Europe and beyond, Hili Company has decades of experience under its belt. Its sharp and tight hands-on management approach led to its businesses becoming leaders in their respective sectors. Hili Company has applied the same philosophy to its other business concerns, focusing on the development of highly skilled and qualified teams to drive business.
Initially a commodities trading firm, Carmelo Caruana Co. subsequently branched into ship brokering and chartering. Carmelo Caruana, the founder, maintained and developed the business all the way through to the early 1970s.
When Carmelo’s nephews, members of the Hili family, joined the company it started to expand and diversify its portfolio. Led by its Chairman, Marin Hili, what became Hili Company – encompassing Carmelo Caruana and related commercial activities – embarked on a journey which led to the present, pursuing opportunities beyond Malta’s shores and transitioning from being brokers, charterers and agents to principal, taking an increasingly more direct role in port activities.
In the 1990s, Hili Company acquired its first container terminal, BCT, in Riga, Latvia, in what was a watershed moment in the group’s history. It provided the foundations for the development of the core terminals business. This was followed up in 2003 with the acquisition of TIV in Venice, Italy, through a joint venture with MSC, and with the acquisition of DCT in Durres, Albania in 2021.
By the turn of the millennium, the Group’s profile was anchored in three core businesses: port operations and related logistical activities, franchising – holding the McDonald’s franchise in a number of countries – and other businesses, including real estate, engineering and financial services.
In 2012, Hili Company was restructured, divesting it of certain businesses in order to sharpen the strategic focus on growing the port terminals and logistics business, and to develop the energy and real estate arms of the business.