KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 15 — Malaysian tycoon Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay is reportedly among several investors interested in acquiring the Global Dream mega luxury cruise liner that was under construction at Genting Hong Kong’s bankrupt shipbuilder, MV Werften in Germany.
Christoph Morgen, the German court-appointed provisional insolvency administrator for MV Werften, told Bloomberg that besides Lim who is still CEO of Genting Berhad, several other serious parties are already in talks to buy the partially constructed cruise liner, but the likeliness of it being sold within the month is slim due to the complexity of the case.
Morgen added that Lim — who resigned as Genting Hong Kong’s chairman and chief executive officer on January 24 — had contacted him at the beginning of the insolvency process, but hoped to find “a better solution for the ship” than the Malaysian gaming and resorts tycoon.
“My impression is that he would only like to buy it if nobody else would be interested in order to get it cheap and possibly to finish the ship somewhere else.
“I hope that we won’t depend on this, because we now have strong interest from many other possible investors,” Morgen was quoted as saying in the report published today.
He added that he hasn’t heard from Lim since.
Efforts to reach out to Lim by Bloomberg have fallen on deaf ears, with a spokeswoman from Genting Berhad — which Lim heads as CEO — declining to comment on the matter.
The Global Dream — a 342 cruise liner was set to be the world’s biggest vessel by passenger capacity, was heralded as ushering in a new era of mega ships tapping into Asia’s growing cruising market.
The ship was about 72 per cent complete when the German government and Genting Hong Kong could not agree on plans to finance the final process of building the vessel — which was said would have cost US$620 million (RM2.6 billion).
Lim resigned from Genting Hong Kong on January 21, days after the cruise operator filed to wind-up its business in what is seen as one of the biggest Asian corporate casualties from the Covid-19 pandemic to date.
His resignation from Genting Hong Kong was announced in a stock exchange filing, together with Au Fook Yew as the company’s deputy CEO and president.
The US office of Genting Hong Kong’s Crystal Cruises brand has since been closed and its employees terminated.
The closing of Crystal Cruises’ operation in Miami came after two of its ships were seized in the Bahamas after a fuel supplier sought the action for US$4.6 million in unpaid fuel bills