Cruise ship operator Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NASDAQ: NCLH) kicked off its initial public offering today. The firm priced 23.53 million shares at $19 a share, which was above the expected range of $16 to $18 a share.
Prior to today’s IPO, Apollo Global Management LLC (NYSE: APO) and TPG Capital owned 50% of cruise operator. The other 50% owner was Hong Kong cruise operator Genting. After the IPO, the three firms will own 88% of Norwegian Cruise Lines. Based on the offering price, the newly public firm is valued at around $3.8 billion.
Net proceeds to the company will be about $447 million, which the company is expected to use to pay down its substantial debt. As of the end of September, Norwegian Cruise Lines held debt of $2.9 billion.
Shares are skyrocketing, now trading at $25.00, up nearly 29% on volume of more than 10 million.