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Bermuda domicile good for Norway exchange listing

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Marcello Ausenda, director, head of Bermuda corporate practice, Conyers (Photograph supplied)

Conyers, the international law firm, is optimistic that more companies looking to raise capital on the Norwegian stock exchanges, will incorporate in Bermuda.

Conyers directors, Marcello Ausenda, head of Bermuda corporate practice, and Guy Cooper, report that the past few years have seen a growing number of companies incorporate in Bermuda and go on to list on the Oslo Stock Exchange.

Their article, recently published on Conyers.bm and on the content platform JD Supra,

The Oslo Børs Exchange experienced a strong 2022 performance in both shipping and oil and gas, which remain core sectors in Norway.

With new listings of Bermuda companies in the past year including Shelf Drilling (North Sea) Ltd on Euronext Growth Oslo and Seacrest Petroleo Bermuda Limited on Euronext Expand Oslo, the presence of Bermuda-incorporated companies on the three Oslo exchanges continues to grow.

By April, 23 Bermuda companies were publicly listed in Norway – 18 on Oslo Børs, two on Growth Oslo and three on Expand Oslo – representing a market capitalisation of $26 billion.

Conyers’ Norway Bulletin points out that since Norway adopted the European Union’s Central Securities Depository Regulation, Bermuda has become an even more attractive domicile for companies seeking to list on a Norwegian exchange: Bermuda is one of the few jurisdictions that both is Central Securities Depositories Regulation compliant and has given all three Norwegian exchanges “appointed stock exchange” status.

The authors provide an update: “Two recent examples involving companies successfully taking this route are Himalaya Shipping Ltd and Cool Company Ltd.

In the first instance, Himalaya, which is primarily listed on Euronext Expand Oslo, completed a $45 million IPO on the New York Stock Exchange.

In the second instance, Cool Company moved its primary listing to the NYSE after its IPO there, making Euronext Growth Oslo a secondary listing.

Both companies commenced their listings in March 2023.

Guy Cooper, director, Conyers (Photograph supplied)

“These examples demonstrate a potential path for companies looking to incorporate in Bermuda and list on Norwegian exchanges. In particular, the opportunity to raise capital through a quick admissions process on the Euronext Growth and subsequently uplist to a larger exchange is attractive to many industry players.

“Bermuda has long been the jurisdiction of choice for companies in the shipping and drilling sectors. In fact, its appeal has been such that Bermuda companies comprise a surprising 36 per cent of the Oslo Børs Shipping Index, second only to Norwegian companies. This speaks to the historic ties between the two seafaring nations and Bermuda’s reputation as a well-established offshore international finance centre.

“Further, companies beyond the core shipping and drilling sectors have been using Bermuda vehicles for some time to access high-quality capital efficiently. Those in the technology and real estate industries are finding Bermuda to be an ideal jurisdiction for Norwegian market activities – with renewables and alternative energy looking to follow suit.

“The advantages of Bermuda include a robust regulatory framework that protects investor and creditor rights as well as a tax-neutral, business-friendly environment. Additionally, Bermuda is now among the few jurisdictions where companies can be seen as compliant with recent changes to the Norwegian Central Securities Depository Act (which incorporated into Norwegian law the European Union’s Central Securities Depository Regulation, or CSDR).”

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Published August 20, 2023 at 12:00 pm (Updated August 20, 2023 at 3:48 pm)

Bermuda domicile good for Norway exchange listing

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