Denmark-based shipping firm A P Moller-Maersk A/S plans to offer 2.3 billion euros ($2.96 billion US) to acquire Royal P&O Nedlloyd, its smaller Netherlands-based competitor. The board of Royal P&O Nedlloyd approved a conditional bid of 57 euros ($73) per share, the Danish company said.
After a 1 euro ($1.30) per share dividend is paid to P&O Nedlloyd shareholders, A P Moller-Maersk anticipates submitting the offer in June.
Maersk-Sealand, which has more than 300 container vessels and 750,000 containers, is owned by the Danish group.
With a fleet of 156 container ships and 428,000 containers, P&O Nedlloyd ranks as the world’s fourth-largest provider of container shipping services by fleet capacity.
According to analyst Brian Boersting of Denmark’s Jyske Bank, other shipping groups could also bid on P&O Nedlloyd, compelling A P Moller-Maersk to raise the amount of its offer.