Frontline lashes out at DHT board

Frontline has insisted its takeover offer for fellow VLCC owner DHT Holdings remains “highly compelling” and Splash understands the John Fredriksen-controlled tanker vehicle has not given up hope of still buying out the New York-listed outfit.

Robert Hvide Macleod, Frontline’s CEO, said in a statement yesterday: “We believe that our offer to DHT shareholders is highly compelling since it provides a meaningful upfront premium, while also giving all shareholders the opportunity to realise the full benefit of the significant synergies and attractive upside that a combined company would create.”

The proposed offer made by Frontline, which represented a 19% premium to the share price of DHT as of closing of January 27,was deemed “wholly inadequate” by the board of directors of DHT.

In a statement, Frontline criticised the DHT board for not getting the best deal possible for its shareholders.

“Rather than engaging in discussions with Frontline with the aim of achieving the highest possible offer to create maximum shareholder value, the Board of Directors of DHT adopted a one-year shareholder rights plan and has since continued to refuse to enter into any discussions,” the statement read.

Frontline maintains that combining the two companies would make the larger entity better positioned to participate in a market recovery than either company would on a stand-alone basis.

The combined company would be expected to create the largest public tanker company by fleet size, market capitalization and trading liquidity.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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