Fredriksen on the hunt

John Fredriksen’s Frontline 2012 is preparing to unveil its next growth plan, with smaller tanker operators in its sights.
John Fredriksen

John Fredriksen

The company said it was now fully focussed on its crude and products tankers after streamlining the company by selling gas carriers and bulkers.

It is still evaluating further growth, with “all options” being considered.

These include several unspecified “structural alternatives”, and the process should be concluded in the third or fourth quarter.

It added: “The board believes there will be several interesting consolidation opportunities going forward.”

Analyst Arctic Securities said it viewed a takeover move for a smaller company as highly likely.

It added FRNT could use shares as currency to buy a rival, or engineer a reverse merger using its existing assets.

FRNT said it believed only experienced tanker owners can hope to raise equity in today’s market and added it was glad to see a slow-down in new start-ups this year.

There was no mention of a long-mooted IPO.

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