Germany's TUI plans shipping unit IPO
Germany's TUI and Albert Ballin said Tuesday that they have begun preparations for a stock market flotation in 2011 of their jointly owned Hapag-Lloyd unit, one of the world's biggest shipping firms.
The companies said that in parallel they would continue the search for strategic and financial investors interested in becoming core minority investors.
In 2008, TUI announced its intention to exit the container shipping business. A first step was taken in 2009 with the sale of a majority shareholding to Albert Ballin.
Following a capital increase, Hapag-Lloyd will be 50.2-percent owned by Albert Ballin and 49.8-percent by TUI by the end of the year.
"The shareholders are now seeking long-term oriented investors to replace TUI to secure a stable shareholder base for Hapag-Lloyd," a statement said.
Hapag-Lloyd generated sales of 4.7 billion euros (6.3 billion dollars) and operating profits of 744 million euros in the first nine months of 2009.
Ranked number five amongst the world's leading shipping lines, the company currently operates 59 ships and charters more than 70 others.
© 2010 AFP