March 13, 2008
Brian Chang sells major stake in Yantai Raffles
Norwegian OTC listed Yantai Raffles Shipyard Ltd today announced that its Chairman, Mr. Brian Chang, has entered into an agreement to sell approximately 81.8 million shares in YRSL, representing approximately 29.9% of YRSL's issued share capital, to China International Marine Containers (Group) Ltd. ("CIMC") at a price of US$6.92 per share (for a total consideration of approximately US$566 million).
Brian Chang founded the Singapore headquartered YRSL which has its manufacturing base in Yantai, China, in 1994.
The agreement is expected to complete in the third quarter of 2008 and is conditional on CIMC obtaining Chinese government approvals.
Mr. Chang will retain a total interest (direct and indirect) in YRSL of approximately 39.0 million shares representing approximately 14.3% of YRSL's issued share capital.
Mr. Chang said, "My vision has been, and continues to be, for YRSL to be the yard of choice for the construction of large offshore marine vessels-- that is, to be the number one yard in the world. We have made excellent progress in developing the yard's infrastructure over the past few years, and we are now paying close attention to securing increased production capacity, and strengthening our engineering and manufacturing capabilities to be best-in-class worldwide.
"CIMC is a world leader in the design and manufacturing of transportation equipment and has extensive experience managing large-scale facilities. There are many opportunities for CIMC to add value to YRSL's activities. YRSL's Board and I are excited by CIMC's involvement as a strategic long-term shareholder, and are more optimistic than ever about YRSL's medium to longterm future." he noted
"Together with CIMC," noted Mr. Chang, "we have already identified several key areas where YRSL could expect to benefit significantly from CIMC's deep expertise, enhancing shareholder value for all our shareholders. These areas include procurement, outsourcing, advanced manufacturing processes and broadening the opportunities for domestic sales.
"This sale of part of my shares will allow CIMC to participate in YRSL's growth in a significant manner," said Mr. Chang. "This transaction will not in any way lessen my involvement in YRSL, nor my passion for the business. I remain totally committed to YRSL, and intend to stay on at least until 2012."
Goldman Sachs was the exclusive financial advisor to Mr. Brian Chang for this transaction.
CIMC has been in operation for just over 25 years. Major shareholders are COSCO Pacific Limited and China Merchants Holdings (International) Co. Ltd. It is the number one manufacturer of containers in the world. In recent years, it has selectively diversified into businesses where it aims and expects to achieve a dominant position.
Mr. Mai Boliang, President of CIMC said, "CIMC has confidence in the long term future of the offshore marine industry and has identified YRSL as a company with potential to be a world leader in the industry. Upon CIMC's involvement in YRSL as its major shareholder, CIMC will not simply be a passive shareholder but, to the extent practical, will work very closely with YRSL. This investment in the offshore marine industry creates a new business segment for CIMC. CIMC shares YRSL's view that a partnership with CIMC will assist it to achieve its objective of being the yard of choice."