COSCO Shipping Holdings Co. Ltd. and Shanghai International Port (Group) Co., Ltd. have made a pre-conditional voluntary general offer to acquire all issued shares of Orient Overseas (International) Limited, parent of Orient Overseas Container Line, at a price of HK$78.67 (US$10.07) per share in cash, according to a joint statement.
OOIL’s controlling shareholder, holding 68.7% of shares, has already given an irrevocable undertaking to accept the offer.
Upon completion of the transaction, COSCO Shipping Holdings will hold 90.1% of OOIL, while SIPG will hold 9.9%.
“We respect OOIL’s management team and its expertise, not to mention its people, brand and culture,” said Min Wan, chairman of COSCO Shipping Holdings. “Our company remains committed to enhancing Hong Kong as an international shipping centre. Following completion, we will continue to invest and strengthen our industry leadership, providing a more extensive platform for the employees of OOIL to excel.”
OOCL is currently the seventh-largest container shipping line in the world. According to Alphaliner, the combined entity will be the third-largest, with an operational fleet of more than 400 vessels and a total capacity of over 2.4 million TEUs.
“We are proud of the business we have built and the people who have been building it,” said Andy Tung, executive director of OOIL. “This decision has been carefully considered and we believe it helps ensure the future success of OOIL. We are confident that COSCO Shipping Holdings is the right partner for us.”
COSCO and OOCL will continue to run under their own brands and will remain in the Ocean Alliance, according to the statement.