CMA CGM acquisition target Neptune Orient Lines (NOL) has made all necessary anti-trust filings and expect that the approvals will come sometime in the middle of 2016.
NOL group president and chief executive Ng Yat Chung said NOL, which is being bought out by French shipping giant CMA CGM for $2.4bn, has made all necessary anti-trust filings.
"So far, we've not encountered any difficulty and we continue to expect that the approvals will come sometime in the middle of 2016."
On 7 December 2015, CMA CGM S.A. announced a pre-conditional voluntary cash offer to acquire NOL at SGD1.30 per NOL share. The offer was subject to anti-trust clearances from the European Union, China and the US.
According to Ng, the $2.4bn acquisition was still expected to be approved by the relevant regulatory bodies by mid-2016, when CMA CGM is due to make a formal voluntary general conditional offer for the remaining shares in NOL and subsequently delist its acquisition target.
CMA CGM has so built up a 3.74% stake in NOL in open market share purchases at below its offer price of SGD1.30 per share.
Rodolph Saadé, vice chairman of CMA CGM, said that he expects the $2.4bn deal to take over NOL to get all the necessary regulatory approvals from various countries by this summer.
Meanwhile, OCBC has urged shareholders to accept CMA CGM’s offer of $1.30 for each share of NOL given that the container shipper has suffered three straight years of losses outlook for the industry still staying tough.