The Naples-based Fratelli D’Amato shipping group has just put into liquidation two companies and will transfer the property of five PSVs left in its fleet into a new single purpose vehicle. Fratelli d’Amato Spa and Dolphin Tanker Srl are the two companies that have been canned since they remained with no assets both in dry and liquid bulk business.
Luigi D’Amato confirmed to Splash the decision to start the voluntary liquidation of both the companies but also added: “In Italy a voluntary liquidation is not an irreversible procedure which might be considered if market conditions improve.”
Instead the five PSVs built in Italy at Rosetti Marino shipyard and controlled by the Luxembourg-based holding Fratelli d’Amato International are to be transferred to a new company and the connected financial exposure is to be renegotiated with the banks with the support of some advisers in the coming weeks.
From 2011 onwards Luigi D’Amato, who is from Naples but has been living in Geneva for years now, has progressively sold his bulk carriers, tankers and offshore units due to low freight rates and defaults of some counterparts.
Looking back to its recent business experience D’Amato said: “At the end of 2006, beginning of 2007 my fleet was composed of 25 owned ships (bulkers and tankers) and 52 chartered in bulkers. In the following years with the incoming crisis I gradually sold the entire fleet to repay the loans and diversify into 10 platform supply vessels projected by Rolls Royce and built in Italy. The chartered bulkers, after heavy losses covered by injections of huge amount of money, were redelivered mainly at the natural expiry to avoid defaults and some others by expensive wash-out.”
The VLCC ordered at STX was converted into three big containerships and sold to Rickmers. “With the money recovered we updated the repayments to the banks, to the commercial creditors and paid the majority of wash-out,” added the Italian owner. “In May 2014 the PSV market collapsed and I was obliged to sell five of them and put in lay-up the remaining five in Sunderland.”
D’Amato concluded saying that his company in the last five years fell victim of many defaults: “We were obliged to accept a settlement at 10-15% of our credit”. Fratelli D’Amato was involved in the Korea Line and Petrobras defaults among others.
The restructuring plan still in progress by the advisers will aim to reduce drastically the debts and continue the management of the five PSVs in the fleet.