Company – History

Mariner is the terminals and logistics arm of Hili Company which finds it roots in the Hili family’s tradition in shipping, dating back to 1923. Initially a business in the trading of commodities, from which ship brokering and chartering were developed, Carmelo Caruana, the founder, maintained and developed the business through the to the early 1970s.

During the period his nephews, members of the Hili family, joined the company. Thereafter the company started to expand and diversify its portfolio. Led by its Chairman, Marin Hili, what became Hili Company – encompassing Carmelo Caruana and other related activities – embarked on a journey pursuing opportunities overseas and transitioned from brokers, charterers and agents to principals and took a more direct role in port activities.

In the 1990s, Hili Company acquired its first container terminal, BCT, in Riga, Latvia, in what was a landmark moment in the group’s history. This provided the foundation for the development of the core terminals business segment. This was followed in 2003 by the acquisition of TIV in Venice, Italy, in a joint venture with MSC.

By the new millennium, the group profile entailed three core businesses: port operations and related logistical activities; franchising – holding the McDonald’s franchise in a number of countries, and; other enterprises in business areas including real estate, engineering and financial services.

In 2012, Hili Company underwent  restructuring, divesting of certain businesses in order to maintain a strategic focus on growing the port terminals and logistics business, Mariner, whilst also developing the finance, energy and real estate arms of the business.