Norway-based dry bulk shipping company Golden Ocean Group Limited has agreed to sell two of its newbuilding contracts at Chinese shipyard New Times Shipbuilding Co. Ltd to Frontline Ltd.
Under the initial contract, the two 157,500dwt vessels were supposed to be Capesize bulkers, but Golden Ocean decided in November to convert the two Capesizes to Suezmax newbuilding contracts.
The vessels are expected for delivery in the first quarter of 2017. Frontline said it would pay US$55m per vessel.
The transaction will reduce the company's newbuilding commitments by US$95m (including sales proceeds) and will also remove the need for financing of two Capesize vessels, the company said. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close in late 2015.
Turkey-based Karadeniz has finalized the acquisition of one capesize bulk carrier for conversion to a powership and the purchase of up to three more 14-year-old capes could follow, according to brokers.
The company recently purchased Nisshin Trader (172,500dwt, built 2001) for US$9.3m from Nisshin Shipping. The ship is to be delivered to Turkey for conversion to a floating power station or powership, and three further capesize vessels could soon follow.
Now is a good time to be buying capesize bulk carriers, especially older vessels. The low market means that 2000-built capes of 175,000dwt are worth 59.3% less than they were a year earlier, showed estimates from VesselsValue.com.
DryShips has sold its first vessels since announcing plans to sell 22 bulk carriers, comprising 20 panamaxes and two supramaxes.
Brokers report that the Athens-based owner has sold two 51,200dwt supramaxes, Byron (built 2003) and Galveston (built 2002), en bloc to an unnamed Middle Eastern buyer for US$6.3m and US$5.8m respectively. Both ships are geared and were built at the New Century shipyard in China.
DryShips bought the sisterships in 2007, near the height of the market, from Germany's Harren & Partner KG for US$51.6m and US$55.5m respectively. Their sale will doubtless incur a significant impairment loss for DryShips.
In September, the NASDAQ-listed company sold 13 capesizes and four panamax bulk carriers to a private firm owned by its CEO George Economou as part of a bigger plan to revitalize DryShips. The 17 ships were sold at an impairment loss of US$795m.
London-listed Goldenport Holdings has sold a 2009-built bulk carrier to Marshall Islands-based Zenith Shipping for US$9.345m.
The vessel, Alpine Trader, was delivered to its new owners on Nov. 5. Net proceeds from the sale will go towards repayment of debt secured against the vessel, according to Goldenport.
Goldenport currently owns seven dry bulk vessels, made up of 6 supramaxes and a post panamax, and five containerships ranging between 970teu and 5,551teu.
In June, the company revealed itself as an acquisiton target for an unknown buyer however the party involved and Goldenport's independent directors were unable to reach and agreement.
Mumbai-based Elektrans Shipping (formerly Doehle Danautic) has announced the acquisition of Japanese-built 149,834dwt suezmax tanker Distya Akula, co-owned with Arya Industries.
The 1995-built tanker will be flagged in India and bring the company's fleet to three vessels. Elktrans and Arya have invested US$40m towards vessel acquisitions, with a chemical tanker and handysize oil tanker making up the fleet.
Daniel Chopra, managing director of Elektrans said, "Acquisition of Distya Akula further consolidates Elektrans' position as a full-service maritime company. We have embarked on an aggressive acquisition plan to increase the ownership fleet size.
"Besides owning oil and gas tankers, we are watching the dry bulk segment, which holds promise. Such an expansion plan, especially in today's tough market scenario, demands, in addition to the technical, commercial and human expertise, steadfast leadership and focus."
Greek dry bulk shipping company Seanergy Maritime Holdings Corp. has received one 2010-built Capesize and one 2011-built Supramax.
The 170,057dwt Capesize has been renamed to M/V Geniuship, and the 56,884dwt Supramax has been renamed to M/V Guardianship.
Both the Geniuship, built by Sungdong SB, and the Guardianship, built by CSC Jinling Shipyard, will be employed in the spot market.
The acquisition cost of the pair of bulkers has been funded by senior secured loan agreements with international financial institutions and by a funding arrangement with Seaenergy's sponsor.
The Geniuship and the Guardianship are the third and the fourth of seven secondhand dry bulkers that the company had agreed to acquire back in August for a gross purchase price of approximately US$183m.
Seaenergy expects to receive the remaining three bulkers by the end of November 2015.
Financially-troubled Japanese dry bulk specialist Daiichi Chuo Kisen Kaisha has sold a 2010-built Capesize bulker and its remaining 15-year charter to compatriot NS United Kaiun Kaisha and its Panamanian subsidiary company for US$63.38m.
The 207,791dwt Katsura, currently in the sixth year of a 20-year charter contract for the transportation of raw materials Daichii signed with Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation in September 2010, is expected to be delivered to NS United in November 2015.
"In our three-year Medium-Term Business Plan, 'Unite & Full-Ahead! (Part II),' which was formulated in May 2014, we set a target of operating fleet volume to reinforce by 50 Capesize by the end of FY 2018. This is our most important Mid-Term Goals in addition to expanding a share of transportation for Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation. We believe that this acquisition will contribute to our Mid-Term Goals," NS United said in a statement.
Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), owner of 16.64% of shares in Daiichi, said it expects to record a JPY26.2bn (US$220m) loss in the first half of FY2015 after Daiichi applied for the start of civil rehabilitation proceedings on Sept. 29.
Chang Jiang Shipping Group Phoenix Co., Ltd. (CSC Phoenix) plans to sell 55 bulk carriers aged 28 years or above, the China-based listed shipowner has recently announced.
The company expects to gain RMB4m from the sale.
The company said it can optimize its fleet structure after the transaction, because the bulk carrier market is sluggish at present.
Danish shipping company TORM is gearing up to fully exit the depressed dry bulk shipping market after agreeing to sell its last two bulkers to an unnamed buyer, and to return one chartered-in vessel to its owner in early October.
The two Panamax bulk vessels – TORM Anholt and TORM Bornholm – were both built in 2004, and are expected to be delivered to the new owner during October and November 2015.
TORM says that the sale is in line with the company's strategy to exit the bulk activities and focus on scale and operational platform in the product tanker segment.
The company says that the transaction does not impact its guidance, and TORM maintains its expectations for 2015 of a positive EBITDA in the range of US$190-230m, and a profit before tax in the range of US$115-155m.
Torm is no longer an owner of bulk carriers, after agreeing to sell two of its panamax bulkers to an unnamed third party for an undisclosed sum.
The vessels being sold are the Torm Anholt (74,200dwt, built 2004) and Torm Bornholm (76,000dwt, built 2004), both of which were built in Japan. Delivery to the buyer is expected in October and November.
No prices for the vessels were unveiled, but VesselsValue.com estimates their market values to be US$9.99m and US$10.18m respectively.
Torm's strategy is to exit dry bulk activities and to focus on scale and the operational of product tankers.