Group makes USD 1.1b offer for Ewos

By

SeafoodSource staff

Published on
June 16, 2013

A private investment group has made a NOK 6.2 billion (USD 1.1 billion, EUR 811.8 million) offer for Ewos, a subsidiary of Norwegian fish farming company Cermaq.

Altor and Bain Capital made the offer this week, according to a statement from Cermaq. The offer comes even as an open offer remains from Cermaq competitor Marine Harvest to buy a controlling interest in Cermaq shares.

While the Cermaq board has repeatedly stated it does not support the Marine Harvest bid, it did call the Altor and Bain Capital offer, which amounts to 10 times Ewos’ market consensus earnings before interest and taxes in 2013, “sufficiently interesting.”

The board is planning to convene a special shareholders meeting to consider the new offer, which would require a more than 50 percent vote to confirm. If confirmed, the board is planning on completing the transaction in mid-July.

In its statement on the Ewos offer, Cermaq’s board reiterated its position that the takeover bid by Marine Harvest is still not in the company’s best interests, but that the board has been trying to find other interested buyers who could present better offers.

“Cermaq has worked on alternative transactions to realize what the board believes best reflects the full value of the company,” the board said in its statement. ”There have been options presented for the acquisition of both the whole and parts of the company from both industrial and financial players.”

If the Ewos sale is finalized, Cermaq said the cash would most likely be used to settle debts.

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