Norwegian maritime group Wilhelmsen takes stake in Reach Subsea

Image: Reach Subsea ASA.

February 18 (Renewables Now) - Norwegian maritime industrial group Wilh. Wilhelmsen Holding ASA (OSE:WWI) has acquired a minority holding in domestic contractor Reach Subsea ASA (OSE:REACH) for NOK 149.9 million (USD 16.8m/EUR 14.8m) in order to beef up its operations in remote subsea vehicles for the renewable energy sector.

In addition to the transaction, Wilhelmsen will receive warrants which, if fully exercised, could increase its ownership in Reach to 33%.

The deal was channelled through wholly-owned subsidiary Wilhelmsen New Energy, which has agreed to subscribe for about 46.1 million new shares in Reach at NOK 3.25 apiece. These shares will represent a stake of 21% in Reach, once the latter issues 33.8 million new units to offshore survey firm iSurvey. That issuance, for its part, will settle Reach's NOK-135-million acquisition of Norvestor-controlled iSurvey, which was unveiled on the same day.

Wilhelmsen and Reach, which is backed by Norwegian industrial investment firm North Energy, will form a strategic partnership to scale up the development of Reach Remote unmanned surface vehicles (USV) under a concept launched last year. The first two USVs are due for delivery in 2023, with a goal to have a low-emission, autonomous fleet for full subsea services in 2025.

(NOK 10 = USD 1.123/EUR 0.988)

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