November 23, 2017 / 3:51 PM / a year ago

Shipping tycoon Fredriksen raises stake in debt collector Axactor, shares rise

OSLO, Nov 23 (Reuters) - Shipping and seafood billionaire John Fredriksen consolidated his position as the top shareholder in debt collector Axactor by buying more stock in the firm on Thursday, lifting the firm’s share price.

Through his family firm Geveran Trading, Fredriksen acquired 22.9 million shares in Axactor at a price of 2.65 crowns per share. Following the deal, Geveran will own 11.47 percent of the stock and remain the company’s top shareholder, up from 9.96 percent.

Fredriksen’s business empire range from transporting oil with Frontline, dry bulk with Golden Ocean to salmon farming with Marine Harvest, among other interests.

Shares in Axactor jumped on the news as much as much as six percent before retreating somewhat and closed up 2.6 percent at 2.75 crowns on the Oslo bourse.

In addition to its shareholding, Geveran also holds warrants equal to 130 million shares exchangeable at 3.25 crowns per share until October 24 in 2019. If these were exercised, Geveran would own 20.04 percent of Axactor. (Reporting By Ole Petter Skonnord, editing by Gwladys Fouche)

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