Orkla has received a warning from Norway Seafoods Holding (NWSH) that there is a possibility that the loan granted to the company by Orkla will not be repaid when it falls due on 30 September 2003. However, NWSH has not finally confirmed that it anticipates defaulting on the loan from Orkla. Orkla has written to the Board of Directors of NWSH emphasizing that Orkla expects the remainder of the loan to be repaid on the due date.
As of September 2002 Orkla's exposure in NWSH in the form of shares and the convertible loan totalled about NOK 1.1 billion. After sales of NWSH shares and repayment of parts of the loan, the remainder of the above-mentioned loan amounts to a total of about NOK 600 million, which falls due in its entirety on 30 September. The loan was originally convertible, but as is already known Orkla decided not to convert the loan.
If NWSH should default on the loan from Orkla, Orkla will take all necessary steps to secure its financial interests. This includes Orkla's right to sell any portion of the loan that may be defaulted on to Kjell Inge Røkke personally.
Orkla has at this stage no further comments to the loan situation.