17 December 2009 - The A.P. Moller – Maersk Group and DFDS have today agreed that DFDS will acquire 100 percent of the shares in ferry and logistics company Norfolkline.
The total value of the deal is approximately EUR 346 million (DKK 2,575 million), which includes the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group obtaining 28.8% of the shareholding in DFDS. In addition, the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group will buy shares in DFDS from Lauritzen Fonden, bringing the Group’s total shareholding in DFDS to approximately 31%.
The deal excludes two of Norfolkline’s vessels, which the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group has agreed to sell to another buyer.
There has been a need for consolidation in the European ferry industry and the combination of Norfolkline and DFDS will create Northern Europe’s leading ferry operator, spanning from Russia to Ireland, with 6,200 employees and a fleet of 75 vessels prior to the sale of the two Norfolkline vessels.
Being a large shareholder in DFDS will create value for the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group and is in line with the Group’s strategy to focus on core activities.
The estimated 2009 pro forma financials of DFDS and Norfolkline show revenues of EUR 1,480 million (DKK 11,000 million) and EBITDA of EUR 139 million (DKK 1,035 million).
“DFDS and Norfolkline are a very good match and we are very pleased with this transaction, says Søren Skou, partner and member of the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group’s Executive Board.
“We have identified both operational and commercial synergies, which will create value for the owners, and we look forward to becoming a major shareholder in DFDS,” says Søren Skou.
The deal will enable DFDS to secure volumes through a much wider logistics network and strategic port access, while maintaining a constant focus on quality and efficiency. The key focus areas for the new company during the initial integration phase will be to generate revenue growth through wider market coverage, to consolidate ro-ro shipping and port terminal operations on the North Sea and to improve capacity utilisation of the route network.
In the long term, the synergy potential will come from three main drivers: Revenues and earnings growth, operating synergies and optimisation of vessel deployment.
The A.P. Moller – Maersk Group has under the shareholders’ agreement the right to nominate one member to the DFDS Board of Directors. The A.P. Moller – Maersk Group intends to nominate Søren Skou. As part of the shareholders' agreement, the parties have also agreed to a lock-up period of 24 months.
The transaction is subject to a number of conditions as set out in the announcement regarding the sale, which can be found at www.maersk.com.
Contact details: Søren Skou, partner and member of the Executive Board +45 3363 1911
Background on Norfolkline:
Norfolkline was founded in 1961 as a logistics company in Holland and in 1969 entered into ro-ro shipping with one vessel. Norfolkline was acquired by the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group in 1985 and an expansion of the ferry activities was begun in 2000 with the opening of the Dover-Dunkerque route, entry into the Irish Sea in 2005 through acquisition of Norse Merchant and opening of a ro-ro route from Rotterdam to Killingholme in 2006.
Norfolkline’s ferry activities comprise both passengers and freight within three main business areas:
• The Channel (Ro-pax)
• The North Sea (Ro-ro & ro-pax)
• The Irish Sea (Ro-ro & ro-pax)
Norfolkline operates a total of 18 vessels.
Within the ferry activities, Norfolkline owns a port terminal in Vlaardingen (Rotterdam) and operates another four port terminals. The port terminals primarily service Norfolkline’s route network.
Norfolkline’s logistics activities comprise 28 offices in 11 countries. The three main business areas are: