The South Korean court handling the bankruptcy proceedings of STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co said it received four bids from four foreign shipbuilders for sell-off of the troubled shipyard and its entire stake in STX France.
According to industry sources on November 4, the company received four letter of intent (LOI) from European shipbuilders, including Dutch shipbuilding giant Damen Shipyards Group, Italian counterpart Fincantieri SpA and French state-controlled naval shipbuilder DCNS. However, the company hasn’t received a bid from any Korean shipbuilder.
The bankruptcy court and Samil PricewaterhouseCoopers, the accounting firm that is leading the sale of STX Offshore and a 66.7 percent stake in STX France, received LOI by Nov. 4. Contenders have the choice of purchasing STX Offshore and the French unit separately or as a package. Since STX France is a specialized shipyard that makes cruise ships, European shipbuilders have shown interest in the company.
In particular, the French government, which owns a 33.3 percent stake in STX France, recently said in an interview with a foreign press, “When the sale of our stake goes against the interest of the national industry, we can refuse to sell our stake as a package.” The French government is worried about the leaks of STX France’s core cruise shipbuilding technology overseas.”