Last updated: 11:31 AM ET, Thu July 09 2015

Lindblad Expeditions Completes Merger

Cruise Line & Cruise Ship | Theresa Norton | July 09, 2015

Lindblad Expeditions Completes Merger

Photo of National Geographic Orion courtesy of Lindblad Expeditions

Lindblad Expeditions completed a merger with public investment company Capitol Acquisition Corp. II, allowing it to trade on the NASDAQ Stock Market and generate funding for more growth.

The company was renamed Lindblad Expeditions Holdings Inc. and expected to start trading on or about July 9 under the new symbol LIND. When the merger was announced in March, it was valued at approximately $439 million.

“Completing the merger with Capitol and entering the public markets represents an important and exciting milestone for us,” said Sven-Olof Lindblad, who founded the company and now serves as president and CEO. “The equity capital and public currency from the merger, together with funds from our recent debt financing, give us significant resources to capitalize on the substantial demand for our expeditions by expanding the fleet and opportunistically seeking accretive strategic acquisitions. With this capital and a strong balance sheet, we are confident in the long-term growth prospects for our business.”

Founded 37 years ago, Lindblad owns and operates six expedition ships that carry the National Geographic name and also charters four small, unique ships for seasonal voyages. The company operates expedition cruises to the Galapagos, Antarctica, the Arctic, the Amazon, Alaska, and Europe with scientists, naturalists, explorers and photographers onboard.

Lindblad’s partnership with National Geographic allows both organizations to work in tandem to produce innovative marine expedition programs and to promote conservation and sustainable tourism around the world.

Capitol’s stockholders elected five new directors to the board of the combined company. Capital CEO Mark D. Ein, who will serve as chairman; Lindblad; L. Dyson Dryden, CFO of Capitol; John M. Fahey, chairman of the National Geographic Society; and Paul J. Brown, CEO of Arby’s Restaurant Group.

“We are excited to have closed our merger with Lindblad, and appreciate the support of our investors,” Ein said. “With its well-established brand, long-term National Geographic partnership, deep management experience and strong track record of growth in this very attractive sector, Lindblad is exactly the kind of compelling long-term investment opportunity that we were looking for.”


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