Danish Ship Finance has a new majority shareholder in Magellan Capital, following an agreement to sell a controlling stake in the financier to the Abu Dhabi-based investment fund.

Private equity firm Axcel and pension funds PFA and PKA have agreed to sell all their shares in Danish Ship Finance Holding — equivalent to 97.6% of the firm’s A-shares — to Magellan for an undisclosed price.

Magellan Capital Holdings is owned by Swedish national Hassan Elali, a serial entrepreneur who has been based in Abu Dhabi since the early 1980s.

The Danish Maritime Fund will maintain its 10% shareholding in the bank, while Axcel will retain a 5% stake for up to two years “to ensure a smooth ownership transition”, a press release said on Monday.

DSF has been reviewing options for the future ownership of the business since early 2022. The transaction was approved on Monday by the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority.

DSF chairman Eivind Kolding said the company is “pleased that the company’s three majority shareholders have agreed to sell DSF to an owner who takes a long-term perspective of the investment and values the company’s core strengths and conservative business approach”.

DSF has a loan book worth $4.9bn and finances 679 vessels secured by first priority mortgages. It has been in ship financing since 1961.

Its team of about 80 people work out of one office in Copenhagen.

The deal will be followed by an offer to DSF’s remaining A-shareholders to sell each of their A-shares at the same price and terms as agreed with Axcel, PFA and PKA.

The A-shares constitute 90% of the share capital in DSF. The B-shares owned by the Danish Maritime Fund constitute the other 10%.

Magellan plans to continue to develop DSF in line with its current strategy and with its executive management team.

Ahmed Omar and Omar Elali will represent Magellan on the board, alongside Kolding, Christian Frigast, Jacob Meldgaard, Thor Jorgen Guttormsen and Peter Nyegaard.

Axcel, PFA and PKA paid DKK 4.25bn ($607m) for a 72% stake in DSF in 2016.

Magellan has a diverse portfolio of investments in public markets, private markets and real estate.

Magellan’s founder Elali sold his offshore marine services company ZMI Holdings to Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) in 2022. He serves as a board member and adviser to Adnoc.

DSF does not expect its credit ratings to change following the transaction.

The financier has an issuer credit rating of BBB+ and a covered bond rating of A with a stable outlook from Standard & Poor’s.