ABP appoints Knight Frank to propel future growth of its Welsh ports

Leading port operator Associated British Ports (ABP), and one of the biggest commercial landowners in the UK, has appointed global property consultancy Knight Frank as joint marketing agents for its five ports in South Wales.

Knight Frank joins property agency Jenkins Best in promoting business opportunities and attracting investment and occupiers for the ports at Barry, Cardiff, Newport, Port Talbot and Swansea.

In 2021, ABP announced its long-term Future Ports: Wales Vision strategy centred around decarbonising energy, manufacturing and logistics around its ports and creating new clean growth environments.  The company is now in the process of implementing that vision.


Helen Thomas, ABP Head of Property South Wales and Short Seas ports, said: “Having worked closely with Knight Frank on individual projects over the years, we are delighted to now appoint them to help market our extensive Welsh property portfolio and to help highlight the opportunities available at our Welsh ports, which includes unrivalled development options and multimodal logistics links.”


Neil Francis, Head of the Logistics & Industrial division of Knight Frank in Cardiff, said: “We will be able to bring our Welsh, UK and international experience to support ABP in this very exciting period. We are involved in sustainable strategies to create green and clean manufacturing and logistics environments across the world, and this is directly relevant to the strategy ABP is undertaking.”


Henry Best of Jenkins Best commented: “ABP is a major landlord in the South Wales commercial property sector and the company’s importance will grow further as these new plans unfold.”

View Towards Lock Entrance, Newport

Earlier this year Newport was the latest of ABP’s five ports in South Wales to undergo a master-planning process, following work at Barry and Port Talbot. ABP announced a decade-long investment boom to transform the Port of Newport to achieve a centre for clean manufacturing and logistics. Sustainability lies at the centre of its proposals with a focus on wind and solar energy as well as facilities for carbon capture and hydrogen electrolysis.

The developments will be connected to the rail network, with the hope of creating hundreds of new jobs at a “clean growth hub”.  ABP says it will also invest in new cargo-handling equipment, high-efficiency warehousing and ready-to-go development sites in a bid to bolster the port’s existing functions.


And at Port Talbot ABP’s ‘Future Port Talbot’ project aims to transform the port into a major hub for manufacturing, assembly, and integrating Floating Offshore Wind (FLOW) components for projects in the Celtic Sea.


Helen Thomas said: “These are very exciting times with enormous opportunities to transform the future of Wales’ ports. The appointment of Knight Frank follows the realignment of ABP’s property strategy and reinforces our strong internal and external team to move forward with our strategy and position ABP as a key player in driving positive change within the property development landscape.”