Belgian financier Albert Frere weighs stake in CMA: union

30th July 2010, Comments 0 comments

French shipping giant CMA CGM is in talks with Belgian financier Albert Frere, who in conjunction with the French state-backed Strategic Investment Fund (FSI) is weighing a 30 percent stake in the heavily indebted group, a union source said Friday.

"There are exclusive negotiations under way between CMA CGM and Albert Frere in which FSI is also present," the source told AFP after a meeting of the CMA CGM workers' committee.

"A stake of 30 percent and an investment of 500 million dollars (384 million euros) is being considered."

CMA CGM is struggling with debt estimated at 5.3 billion dollars but it managed to turn a profit in the first quarter thanks to a pick-up in world trade.

The company, the world's third largest container operator, sees an operating profit for the full year as well after sustaining a loss in 2009.

© 2010 AFP

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