Star Surprises NCL With Takeover Bid

Friday, December 17, 1999
Singapore-listed Star Cruises Plc launched a surprise takeover bid for Norway's NCL Holding ASA on Dec. 17, after U.S. giant Carnival Corp. bowed out of a battle for control. Star offered 35 Norwegian crowns ($4.38) a share for NCL, valuing it at about 8.73 billion Norwegian crowns ($1.10 billion). Star will also assume NCL debts of about six billion crowns. The bid was inevitable after Star lifted its shareholding in NCL above 40 percent late on Dec. 16, the threshold above which a formal takeover has to be launched under Norwegian law. NCL officials said they were surprised by the bid after Star had assured them only a day earlier that it had no such plans.
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