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Norway's Camillo Eitzen to raise US$60m in listing

Camillo Eitzen & Co, a Norwegian shipping company, plans to raise about US$60 million in an initial public offering to fund expansion of its fleet.

Camillo Eitzen & Co, a Norwegian shipping company, plans to raise about US$60 million in an initial public offering to fund expansion of its fleet.

The company will offer 12 million shares at between 35 kroner and 38 kroner (S$8.70 to S$9.50) each in a sale running from May 26 to June 9, said Axel Camillo Eitzen, the company's owner, in a telephone interview. His stake will be diluted to between 65 per cent and 70 per cent after the sale.

Camillo Eitzen has benefited from surging Chinese demand for raw materials such as steel and iron ore, which pushed dry-bulk freight rates to a record. The company operates about 60 bulk carriers, and also owns chemical and gas tankers.

'The dry-bulk market will continue to be good, but not as good as we've seen in the past half-year,' said Mr Eitzen, 49, who's the fourth generation managing the family shipping business. 'Chemicals and gas will be our main focus' for expansion, he added.

The company, whose roots date back to 1883, had net income of US$10.6 million on sales of US$346 million last year, according to pro forma figures. The current company was established in November, after the jointly owned shipper Tschudi & Eitzen was split in two.

The stock is set to start trading soon after June 16, when the Oslo Stock Exchange's board meets, Mr Eitzen said. Norwegian brokerage Pareto Securities AS and Nordea Bank AB are handling the sale.

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