Port Security Conference

April 29 2003

Hoegh set for privatization
Two weeks after Norway's Bergesen was bought up by Hong Kong's Sohmen-Pao family, another family controlled Norwegian shipping company looks set to go private again.

Aftenposten reports that Aequitas Holding AS, controlled by the Hoegh family has already secured 83.2 percent of the shares in Leif Hoegh & Co. Now it is making an offer for all outstanding shares in the company. Aequitas' offer of NOK 124 per share values the company at about NOK 3.6 billion ($505 million) and represents a 30 percent premium on Friday's closing price.

Leif O. Hoegh is chairman of Aequitas Holding, Morten W. Hoegh and Westye Hoegh are board members. Aftenposten reports Aequitas as saying it has obtained financing to take Hoegh private from Den norske Bank, Nordea and Hamburgische Landesbank.

Leif Hoegh, founded in 1927, has a fleet of about 120 vessels. Its main operations are its car-carriers run through the Hoegh Ugland Auto Liners (HUAL) cooperation and its refrigerated carriers run through Cool Carriers.

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