Aker BioMarine contemplates $225m private placement and listing on Oslo Stock Exchange

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Fishing and biotech company providing krill products intends to use the net proceeds from the issue of new shares to repay a USD 90 million shareholder loan to Aker.

On a statement on the Oslo Stock Exchange, the marine ingredients company Aker BioMarine writes that intends to proceed with a listing on the Oslo Stock Exchange within Q1 2021.

Over recent years, it said it has invested significantly in additional capacity and building a fully integrated value chain, which is “now positioning the company for strong further growth,” it wrote.

Aker and Aker Capital announces that its subsidiary Aker BioMarine has engaged Arctic Securities, DNB Markets, a part of DNB Bank, and Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken as joint bookrunners to assist the company in a contemplated private placement of new shares in the company followed by a listing of its shares on Merkur Market.

“Aker BioMarine is a positive value trigger in Aker’s portfolio of industrial investments. This is the result of a long-term commitment to Aker BioMarine and is a diversification within a core area for Aker in a fast-growing marine ingredients market. Aker and the company have invested significantly in building a fully integrated value chain, forming the basis for profitable and sustainable growth,” said Øyvind Eriksen, President and CEO of Aker.

The private placement comprises an offering of up to 18,532,542 new shares issued by the company, raising gross proceeds of up to approximately USD 225 million. The private placement will result in a free float of approximately 21 per cent.

The private placement has received significant interest from high quality institutional investors. Multiple tier 1 institutions in the Nordics and in the US have pre-committed to subscribe for a substantial amount in the private placement.

The company intends to use the net proceeds from the issue of new shares to “strengthen the balance sheet,” including the repayment of a shareholder loan to Aker of approximately USD 90 million plus accrued interest, increase flexibility for growth investments, and for general corporate purposes.

Aker’s principal owner and chairman, Kjell Inge Røkke, has been passionate about Aker BioMarine’s commercial opportunities since its establishment in 2006: “I have been curious about krill’s nutritious and valuable ingredients since I started fishing in the early 1980s. I am impressed by what CEO Matts Johansen and the Aker BioMarine team have achieved in recent years,” said Røkke,  pointing to a football analogy.

“Liverpool is Liverpool, and that won’t change. But Liverpool has become something entirely different after Jürgen Klopp took over as the club’s manager in 2015. I like to say the same about Aker BioMarine. The company has become entirely different after Matts took over as CEO. It’s a pleasure to witness Matt and his team’s accomplishments over the years,” added Røkke.

The shares will be offered at a price per share of NOK 115.85. The offer price corresponds to a pre-money value of the equity of the company of approximately EUR 749 million.

However, Aker BioMarine was no success story the last time the company was listed. Back then, the company was more like Liverpool under the leadership of Graeme Souness.