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Five Stars Shipping: Biding its time before adding to the fleet

Mumbai: Five Stars Shipping started its operations in 1985 in India, though the primary shareholders have been associated with shipping since 1948. As well as an owner the company also manages ships.
Khushroo Dhunjibhoy was the founding member of Five Stars Shipping along with his father Noshir Dhunjibhoy in 1985.
The firm owns one five-year-old capesize and three modern Japanese built panamaxes. It also has three more Japanese built panamaxes owned by S. K. Sarawagi group under full technical management.
There are plans to own more ships, says Khushroo Dhunjibhoy, but currently with not many charterers ready to take vessels on long period, the new acquisition plan is on hold.
“Once the climate changes in the shipping industry and we see some direction, we will definitely consider buying more vessels,” says Dhunjibhoy.
Panamaxes are Five Stars preferred ship type as the company firmly believes that in the future all Indian ports will be able to accept this ship type.
The volatile dry bulk markets are hard to read at the moment, but Dhunjibhoy reckons they will “inch up” after the summer.
“We think that the market is already more or less at levels post the Lehman crisis and it cannot stay like this forever,” says Dhunjibhoy.
Five Stars has managed many different ship types for third parties over the years. Dhunjibhoy notes that no two ships are identical, even two sisters will differ. “This means,” he reckons, “that you cannot manage ships like MacDonald’s franchises and the personal attention and quality service will be missed out with large organisations. Hence the very large shipmanagers ultimately become ineffective.”  [31/07/14]


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