KKR to buy Norway’s Ocean Yield in $829m deal

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U.S. investment firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR) has offered to buy Norwegian ship owning company Ocean Yield for 7.2 billion Norwegian crowns ($829 million), the two companies said in a joint statement on Monday.

Ocean Yield’s board supported the bid, and its top owner, Norway’s Aker ASA, said it had agreed to sell its 61.65% stake to KKR. ($1 = 8.6872 Norwegian crowns).

Ocean Yield is a ship owning company that holds investments in vessels on long-term charters.

Since 2012, the company has grown its fleet from 3 to 63 vessels, which consists of oil tankers, liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers and container ships.

Aker is the largest shareholder of Ocean Yield through its subsidiary Aker Capital. It holds 61.65% of the outstanding shares in the company

Under the terms of the agreement, Aker Capital AS has agreed to sell its ownership stake in OY Holding LR2 to Octopus Bidco for $5.1m.

Ocean Yield CEO Lars Solbakken said: “We are pleased that KKR, a leading global investment firm with a strong track-record in successful partnerships, is becoming a strategic partner to us to further strengthen Ocean Yield as a leading maritime leasing company.

“By leveraging KKR’s capital, expertise and network, Ocean Yield will be well positioned to develop the business with the intention to build a substantially larger company. The team is excited for the next phase of developing Ocean Yield.”

Ocean Yield and Aker Capital have also been in discussions regarding the sale of the Dhirubhai-1 floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) unit to Aker Energy.

The FPSO is planned to be used in development and commercialisation of the Deepwater Tano Cape Three Points block offshore Ghana. Currently, it has been idle since its last contract in India expired in September 2018.

In connection with the deal, Aker Energy is granted an option to acquire the FPSO for $35m.

Reporting by Terje Sols

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