Wednesday, October 2, 1996 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Seattle Firms Merge Into Norway's Aker

Seattle Times Business Reporter

An owner of several Seattle-area businesses has executed a merger agreement with a large Norwegian company.

Resource Group International, based in the Netherlands Antilles, ended its monthslong stalking of Norway's Aker by announcing the two had merged into a company that will have sales of about $3 billion and a Norwegian stock-market value pushing $1.5 billion. The stock swap was valued at $600 million.

Since the spring, RGI, about half the size of Aker, has owned about 40 percent of Aker's stock. But as recently as Monday, the companies said a merger would not happen.

Through Seattle-based American Seafoods, RGI is one of the nation's largest fishing companies. RGI also owns Brooks Sports, a Redmond-based maker of athletic shoes, and Helly-Hansen, a Redmond maker of outerwear.

RGI also has major interests in real estate and other businesses.

RGI Chief Executive Kjell Inge Rokke will own a third of the new company.

RGI's merger partner owns Scandinavia's most prominent cement and oil-and-gas companies.

Bjorn Rune Gjelsten, Rokke's partner who had become chairman of Aker after RGI's earlier stock purchases, will continue to run the


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