GERMAN shipping giant Hapag-Lloyd, the fourth biggest after Maersk, MSC and CMA CGM, is preparing for an initial public offering (IPO) by picking Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and Berenberg to lead the transaction, Reuters reports.
This comes amid speculation that Hapag-Lloyd is among the leading candidates to take over Singapore's NOL and its principal holding APL now Temasek appears ready to sell. Hong Kong's OOIL has also been named as a candidate.
A flotation of a Hapag minority stake could value Hapag-Lloyd at more than EUR5 billion (US$5.5 billion) and take place as early as the fall, Dow Jones reported.
When it announced its merger with the container shipping activities of Chilean rival Compania Sud Americana de Vapores (CSAV) last year, Hapag-Lloyd said it would seek to list on the stock exchange.
But CEO Rolf Habben Jansen said in May a flotation was more likely after 2015.
Europe's largest tourism group TUI, which holds 13.9 per cent in Hapag, has stressed in the past that it wants to sell its stake in the event of an IPO as part of a strategy to focus solely on tourism.
The Vapores owner family holds 34 per cent in the combined group, while the City of Hamburg holds 23.2 per cent and entrepreneur Klaus-Michael Kuehne holds 20.8 per cent, with smaller stakes held by financial investors.
Mr Habben Jansen has previously said the company would like to get three or four good quarters under its belt before floating a minority stake.
Source : HKSG, 21.07.15.