GC Rieber Shipping ASA has entered into an agreement to sell its stake in Reef Subsea AS to HV V Invest Golf AS and HV V Invest Golf II AS, two investment companies of the private equity fund HitecVision V, LP. The agreed purchase price is NOK 175 million (USD 28.4 million), which will be settled by a combination of cash and seller’s credit.
Adjusted for share of loss from Reef Subsea in the fourth quarter 2013, the sale will have a negative effect of NOK 83 million for GC Rieber Shipping in the fourth quarter. Negative effect on earnings from the investment in Reef Subsea amounts to NOK 156 million for 2013.
The sale of the stake in Reef Subsea is a consequence of GC Rieber Shipping’s strategic decision to focus on its core business and expertise within ownership, development and management of advanced vessels within the offshore market.
“GC Rieber Shipping aims to focus on the three areas defined as our core business. We see exciting opportunities in ice/ support, subsea and also within seismic. We have to exploit our strong financial position, by selectively pursue growth opportunities we believe will provide the best return”, comments CEO Irene Waage Basili.
GC Rieber Shipping remains committed to Reef Subsea as a key supplier. The change will not affect any contracts held by Reef Subsea neither will it affect the charter commitments Reef Subsea has for the vessels Polar King or Polar Prince from GC Rieber Shipping. These vessels will remain within Reef Subsea fleet until completion of respective firm periods, with Reef Subsea retaining the option to extend the contracts.
Duncan MacPherson, Chief Executive Officer at Reef Subsea said: “The team at Reef Subsea are very pleased to have HitecVision as main shareholder. HitecVision have shown commitment to work with the management at Reef Subsea to create value for all stakeholders. We look forward to a continued strong working relationship as we grow the business into a leading subsea contractor.”
Closing of the transaction is expected to take place as soon as the Norwegian Competition Authority has approved the transaction, or the deadline for intervention has expired. This is expected to take place in medio March 2014.