Hapag-Lloyd IPO To Go Ahead, Books Closed

M/V Chicago Express

By Reuters 2015-11-03 18:52:18


FRANKFURT, Nov 3 (Reuters) - German shipping group Hapag-Lloyd is pricing its initial public offering (IPO) at the low end of a revised range, giving the group a market capitalisation of about 2.4 billion euros ($2.6 billion) or less than half the original target, two people familiar with the deal said.

Hapag-Lloyd shares are being sold at 20 euros ($21.92)apiece, they said on Tuesday after order books for the shares closed.

The company had originally targeted a market cap of more than 5 billion euros, but in wobbly markets offered shares for 23-29 euros each.

On weak demand, it later postponed the IPO, trimmed the number of shares on offer and lowered the price range to 20-22 euros.

Several large investors had cancelled share orders after a profit warning from peer Maersk rocked already jittery markets.

Maersk Line, the world's largest container shipping company which transports a fifth of all goods on the busiest routes between Asia and Europe, has been hit by overcapacities and a slump in freight rates.

Hapag-Lloyd is also suffering from the slowdown in global trade, but it is less exposed to the Asia-Europe route than Maersk and other peers as it focuses on the Europe-North America routes, which have benefited from a strong U.S. dollar. (Reporting by Arno Schuetze and Alexander Hübner; Editing by Sylwia Lasek and Georgina Prodhan)