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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Today's Sunday Times reports that the Dubai Port organisation is about to make a formal bid for P&O. I wonder what will happen to P&O's last remaining ships in their Ferry Division?

Fred
 

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Ahoy,

Here the article:

P&O 'preliminary' takeover talks

UK ports and ferries operator P&O has received approaches on a potential takeover, its board said on Sunday.
"P&O confirms that it has received a preliminary contact... which may or may not lead to an offer," the firm said.
The Sunday Times says the interested party is Dubai Ports World, owned by the United Arab Emirates government, which could bid £3bn ($5.35bn).
It said Dubai Ports has hired Deutsche Bank to advise it on a bid, and a first meeting with P&O could take place soon.
The Gulf firm manages ports in Asia, Europe, Australia and South America, and P&O owns ports around the world.
Last week P&O, which has been slimming down its ferries and property arms, cut back earnings expectations for its key ports business.
In the past year there has been strong growth at its Asian ports, but that has been offset by more sluggish economic conditions in the UK and Australia.
Any developments will be watched closely by others in the market, such as Singaporean state investment firm Temasek and Danish shipping group A.

Job losses

In August P&O, full name Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation, unveiled a sharp dip in first-half earnings. Pre-tax profits were £30.6m, down from £53.4m at the same time in 2004.
P&O has been selling properties and slashing jobs at its loss-making ferry operations as part of a shake-up.
The company was forced to rethink its strategy as budget airlines and the Channel Tunnel eroded its market share.
Over 1,000 job losses were announced in 2004 and P&O has since cut back on routes.
The final P&O voyage from Portsmouth to Le Havre set sail at the end of September, with the loss of 350 jobs.
P&O had also been conducting a property disposal programme - in June, the company offloaded its 25% stake in Dutch shipping company P&O Nedlloyd, leading to a £187.9m one-off gain.
 

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From what I have read in the past, P+O along with several other now defunct British shipping companies were being run by people trained in accountancy, and without a great knowledge of the shipping trade.

Frank
 

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Ruddy accountants

Frank P said:
From what I have read in the past, P+O along with several other now defunct British shipping companies were being run by people trained in accountancy, and without a great knowledge of the shipping trade.

Frank
Accountants have a lot to answer for, we let one run Harland and Wolff and look what happened then (Night) For any accountants on this site sorry but you really are the kiss of death when you get your calculators out. I'm sorry but you can't build ships or run a shipping line if all you are is a bean counter.
I'll wind my neck in now and wait for the flak (Cloud)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Tmac1720 said:
Accountants have a lot to answer for, we let one run Harland and Wolff and look what happened then (Night) For any accountants on this site sorry but you really are the kiss of death when you get your calculators out. I'm sorry but you can't build ships or run a shipping line if all you are is a bean counter.
I'll wind my neck in now and wait for the flak (Cloud)
From time to time in my career I have had the privilege of working with a fine Ulsterman, John Parker. He is now the Chairman of P&O, Tmac. You must know him better than I do, but I would never have thought of him as an accountant. Have I missed something?

Fred
 

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fred henderson said:
From time to time in my career I have had the privilege of working with a fine Ulsterman, John Parker. He is now the Chairman of P&O, Tmac. You must know him better than I do, but I would never have thought of him as an accountant. Have I missed something?

Fred
No Fred you haven't missed anything. I know John Parker personally and am proud to say he is a friend. He certainly is NOT an accountant he is a Shipbuilder of the old school. Knows ships inside and out but even he could not win when the accountants arrived in H&W. John is a Gentleman and if I may say so a design genius he almost singlehandedly saved H&W but as I say the government appointed an accountant as his deputy and from that day forth the sparks flew. In the end John simply had enough and was spirited away to Babcock Power before moving on to Transco. What a loss he was, his deputy took over and five years later Harlands closed.
 

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My quote about accountants and what they have done for British industry in general, have been taken over the years from what are supposed to be reputable newspapers i.e. The Daily Telegraph and the The Guardian.

Frank
 

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If the ferries are taken over, I hope they keep the Bilbao route open only I enjoyed my tip down there back in September and was hoping to do it again next year. David
 

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It is all very fine to dispense vitriolic on the accounting profession but at the end of the day commercial shipping is just that, a commercial enterprise and as such it exists to make a return on investment, exactly the same as any other commercial venture. And no, I am not an accountant.
CBoots
 

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Discussion Starter #16
The Hong Kong Huchinson Wampoa Group are also being mentioned. The P&O management seem to be far more interested in establishing an auction than they are in maintaining their independence. If they succeed they may get over £3 billion for their shareholders.
It is interesting that when P&O Princess was spun off from P&O and became an independent company it was worth more than P&O. Subsequently P&O Princess was taken over by Carnival using a very unusual dual listing structure, whereby the P&O Princess shareholders became owners of Carnival shares listed on the London Stock Exchange, entitely seperate from about 70% of Carnival shares listed on the New York Exchange. The Carnival London shares are currently valued at over £6 billion. Which is an indication of the very much greater current value of the cruise business over any other shipping activity today.

Fred (Read)
 
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