TUI and a group of German investors are moving toward an initial public offering for German shipping line Hapag-Lloyd in the second quarter, Reuters reported.
The news service quoted an unnamed source as saying analyst briefings are set to start Feb. 15 concerning financial data they can use to prepare an investment case on the IPO for Hapag-Lloyd, the world's sixth-largest container shipping line.
TUI aims to sell about half of its 49.8 percent stake in Hapag-Lloyd and has said its investment in the shipping line is worth some $2.7 billion, of which $2 billion is equity.
The owners of Hapag-Lloyd in December picked Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and Greenhill to start preparations for a public listing.
"The owners aim to float Hapag-Lloyd before Easter," an investment banker was quoted as saying, although Reuters said "a source close to Hapag-Lloyd's owners cautioned that date may prove ambitious." Easter falls on April 24 this year.
A TUI spokesman said no decision on a possible IPO had yet been taken. The Albert Ballin investor group declined to comment. The group, which includes the state of Hamburg as well as Klaus-Michael Kuehne, majority owner of logistics group Kuehne & Nagel, owns 50.2 percent of Hapag-Lloyd.
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