Prince Alwaleed, Vivendi chairman promote strategic partnership

Updated 27 February 2016

Prince Alwaleed, Vivendi chairman promote strategic partnership

RIYADH: Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, chairman of Kingdom Holding Company (KHC) and chairman of Rotana Group, met Vincent Bollore, chairman of Vivendi at George V, Hotel in Paris.
The meeting was also attended by Fahad Alsukait, CEO of Rotana Group, Hassna Alturki, executive manager for international relations to the chairman and Kacy Grine, adviser to KHC.
During their meeting, Prince Alwaleed and Bollore discussed general, business and economic issues and future potential of a strategic partnership.
Furthermore, Prince Alwaleed and Bollore discussed the deal of acquiring KHC’s shares with a minimum amount of $150 million (SR563 million) that took place in 2015.
Moreover, the two discussed economic, cultural matters and topics related to media.
They also discussed the bi-lateral relations between Saudi Arabia and France, and the strong relations between the prince and France, especially KHC’s investments in France that are considered to be the largest Saudi Arabian presence in France.
In June 2015, French President François Hollande and Prince Alwaleed held a meeting at the French presidential Palace, The Elysee.
In a strategic alliance between France and KHC.
A consortium of France’s big companies led by the CDCIC International Capital, the International investment arm of Caisse des Depots, France’s Sovereign Wealth Fund, announced that they have approved an investment in KHC.
The deal constitutes the acquisition of KHC’s shares with a minimum amount of $150 million (SR563 million) subject to increase. Moreover, Prince Alwaleed retained all the 95 percent stake in KHC.


Gulf Marine CEO quits after review sparks profit warning

Updated 31 min 42 sec ago

Gulf Marine CEO quits after review sparks profit warning

  • Tensions in the Arabian Gulf, a worrisome global growth outlook and uncertainty over oil prices have recently dampened investor confidence

DUBAI: Gulf Marine Services said on Wednesday Chief Executive Officer Duncan Anderson has resigned as the oilfield industry contractor warned a reassessment of its ships and contracts showed profit would fall this year, kicking its shares 12 percent down.

The Abu Dhabi-based offshore services specialist said a review by new finance chief Stephen Kersley of its large E-class vessels operating in Northwest Europe and the Middle East pointed to 2019 core earnings of between $45 million and $48 million, below $58 million that it reported last year.

A source familiar with the matter told Reuters that Anderson, who has served as CEO for 12 years, was asked to step down. Anderson could not be reached for comment.

The company, which in the past predominantly operated in the UAE, expanded operations and deployed large vessels in the North Sea and Saudi Arabia nine years ago and listed its shares in London in 2014.

Tensions in the Arabian Gulf, a worrisome global growth outlook and uncertainty over oil prices have recently dampened investor confidence.

The North Sea has seen a revival in production in recent years due to new fields coming on line and improved performance by operators following the 2014 oil price collapse.

Still, the basin’s production is expected to decline over the next decade, according to Britain’s Oil and Gas Authority.

“(The CFO’s) review has coincided with a pause in renewables-related self-propelled self-elevating support vessels activity in the North Sea, which will impact several of the higher day-rate E-Class vessels,” Investec wrote in a note.

Gulf Marine appointed industry veteran Kersley as chief financial officer in late May as it sought to halt a slide which has seen the company’s shares fall nearly 80 percent last year and another 23 percent so far this year.

The company said market conditions remained challenging and that it was still in talks with its financial advisors regarding a new capital structure.

“Management, the new board and the group’s advisors, have been in negotiation with the group’s banks on resetting its capital structure and progress has been made,” it said in a statement.

Last year, Gulf Marine said contracts were delayed into 2019 as the company was seen to be in breach of certain banking covenants at the end of 2018.

The company said it was still in talks with its banks and individual lenders with hopes of getting a waiver or an agreement to amend the concerned covenants.