American Shipper

Wilh. Wilhelmsen plans restructuring, IPO

Wilh. Wilhelmsen plans restructuring, IPO

   Norwegian company Wilh. Wilhelmsen said it plans to restructure so that its shipping and logistics activities will be carried forward under a separately listed entity that is able to raise capital.

   The Oslo-based company said the change will “position the group for future growth.”

   It said it hopes to raise $200 million to $400 million in an initial public offering for the shipping and logistics business, which is a part owner of several companies in the shipment of cars and other roll-on/roll-off cargo — Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, EUKOR Car Carriers Ltd. and American Roll-on Roll-off Carrier.

   “The restructuring facilitates independent business developments of the shipping segment and the logistic segment on the one hand and the maritime services segment on the other,” Wilh. Wilhelmsen said. The new structure “is deemed preferable partly due to the different economic cycles affecting the segments and partly because the size and the capital intensity of each of the segments makes it beneficial, from both an organizational and a financial perspective, to operate and fund the shipping and logistics segment in a separate listed company.”

   The restructuring is subject to approval at Wilh. Wilhelmsen's annual general meeting on April 15, but the company noted shareholders representing about 70 percent of the voting shares and 68 percent of share capital support the transaction and have agreed to vote their shares in favor of the plan.