bergen group

Bergen Group Rises Nearly 50 Percent on Sale of Offshore Engineering Business

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February 21, 2013

(Bloomberg) — Bergen Group ASA, a Norwegian shipbuilder and offshore services company, climbed the most in more than 3 ½ years in Oslo after agreeing to sell its Rosenberg unit for 1.09 billion kroner ($195 million).

The stock jumped as much as 48 percent to 8.25 kroner, the biggest intraday gain since June 2, 2009, and traded 43 percent higher as of 11:10 a.m. local time. Bergen, based in the west coast city of the same name, agreed to sell its Rosenberg offshore engineering unit in Stavanger to Australia’s WorleyParsons Ltd., it said in a statement today.

The 1.09 billion kroner sale price compares to a 2007 purchase price of about 700 million kroner, Pareto Securities ASA said in an e-mail to clients. “This is a very strong price for the yard, especially considering the expectations,” it said. A price of about 500 million kroner had been expected, Dagens Naeringsliv reported on Feb. 5, without saying where it got the information.

Bergen has been investing in its offshore unit, which contributed more than 40 percent of revenue last year, to take advantage of rising spending on oil and gas exploration and production. That’s helped offset a weaker performance from the company’s shipbuilding operation, which contributed about a third of revenue last year and which has struggled with delays and cost overruns on some of its projects.

Bergen’s remaining assets, which include its Hanoeytangen unit, its services divisions and its shipbuilding operations, have a “value potential” of about 8 kroner a share, giving the company a total value of 15 kroner a share, the broker said.

The market is “unlikely to fully reflect the values of the remaining divisions at this stage,” Pareto said. “Further clarity on the potential shipbuilding sale will be the next trigger for the stock,” expected at Bergen’s fourth-quarter earnings presentation on Feb. 27, it said.

Shares in Bergen have advanced 3.2 percent during the last 12 months, giving the engineering company a market value of 484.4 million kroner.

– Stephen Treloar, Copyright 2013 Bloomberg.


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