CMA CGM Completing Acquisition of NOL
CMA CGM announced last week that it crossed the compulsory acquisition ownership threshold in Neptune Orient Lines Limited (NOL). Following its all-cash voluntary conditional general offer for NOL which was launched on June 6, CMA CGM now owns 2,376,715,557 shares representing 91.28% of NOL’s share capital.
CMA CGM confirmed that it intends to exercise its rights of compulsory acquisition to acquire all the NOL shares held by NOL shareholders who have not accepted the offer, at a price equal to the offer price, in accordance with Singapore’s Companies Act.
CMA CGM will therefore exercise its rights to compulsorily acquire the remaining NOL shares as soon as practicable after the close of the offer. Payment for NOL shares that are acquired on that basis will be made in cash within seven business days after the completion of the compulsory acquisition, which is expected to take at least one month from its commencement.
CMA CGM announced its offer to acquire NOL’s shares last December. In May, the European Commission cleared the acquisition conditional upon NOL leaving the G6 liner shipping alliance.
NOL, through its operating brand, the container carrier APL, has had its share of financial problems in recent years. Revenue was down from $9.4 billion in 2010 to $8.6 billion in 2014. 2010 was the last year the company showed a profit.
Last May, Temasek, the Singapore siverign wealth fund, sold its logistics division, APL Logistics, to Japanese Kinetsu World Express for $1.2 billion.
CMA CGM earlier announced that the Singapore stock exchange would suspend trading of NOL shares and that CMA CGM would not take steps for the suspension to be lifted. In addition, CMA CGM intends to have NOL delisted from the main board of the stock exchange.
CMA CGM is the third largest container carrier in the world, after Maersk and Mediterranean Shipping. It operates 450 vessels that call at more than 400 ports in the world, across five continents. In 2015, the company’s vessels carried 13 million TEU.
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