Watching the World: An arranged marriage

The recent drama involving Kvaerner AS, at 148 one of Norway's oldest and proudest companies, and OAO Yukos, Russia's second largest oil company and an aggressive and acquisitive newcomer, unfolded like a play by the greatest Norwegian dramatist, Henrik Ibsen.The main players were sober, straight-faced bankers examining the books of a company that was facing a financial crisis. The supporting cast was the 138,000 Kvaerner employees, anguishing over their future but in a nonspeaking role.The script indicated that a marriage would take place-a marriage of convenience, as Yukos was a suitor because it needed Kvaerner's expertise and had the money necessary to enter Norwegian soci...

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