Star Cruises was listed on the Hong Kong stock exchange on Nov. 28 and traded at HK$7.75 at press time (approximately US$ 1.00).

Star also placed approximately 685.6 million new shares comprising 16 percent of its enlarged share capital, bringing in net proceeds of $487 million following debt conversion.

The total $737.5 million worth of new equity, priced at HK $5.66 (US $0.72), goes to three investors: Resort World Berhad will be issued 609.8 million new shares, or 14.1 percent of the share capital, through conversion of a $442.5 million loan due next year; new investor HSZ LTD., a Swiss fund manager, will purchase 48.2 million shares, or 1.2 percent of the share capital; and another new investor, Kay Hian Private Ltd., a Singapore stock brokerage, will purchase 27.6 million shares, or 0.7 percent. As part of the transaction a $240 million loan will be converted into shares and a company director will purchase $200,000 in shares.

Proceeds of the transaction will go to debt repayment, acquisitions, shipbuilding and general working capital. The purchase of Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) required Star to borrow $600 million from 16 banks and $190 million from shareholders.

In conjunction with the HK listing, Star withdrew its listing from the Luxembourg stock exchange.

Just prior to the share sales announcement, on Nov. 24, Star subsidiary Arrassas LTD. announced it would purchase 29.1 million shares of NCL Holding Asa at NOK 15 per share from Resort World, Geneting Overseas Holdings and Palomino (all companies affiliated with Star). When the transaction is completed Arrassas will own approximately 95.35 percent of NCL. The bulk of the remaining shares are controlled by Saudi billionaire Prince al-Waleed Bin Talal, who continues to be involved in a legal dispute with Star regarding the purchase price of his shares.