Vulture firms circle DryShips, Wilbur Ross ‘likely’ to invest more in shipping

Vulture firms circle DryShips, Wilbur Ross ‘likely’ to invest more in shipping

An unnamed US institutional investor is poised to acquire a “pretty big” position in DryShips as its debt management becomes more embattled, sources tell Splash.

The undisclosed company thinks DryShips’ debt is too great, and hopes to be able to make a play as a major creditor if the Economou-led company, which is listed in the Nasdaq Capital Market, defaults on any more of its loans.

Famed distressed debt investor Wilbur Ross declined to say whether the unnamed company was Investco, of which he is founder, chairman and chief strategist.

“Our policy is not to comment on rumors. I can say though that we are on balance happy with our shipping investments and will likely invest more in the space,” Ross told Splash.

DryShips posted a net loss of $2.84bn for 2015 and on June 7 revealed it had defaulted on three bank facilities, which it said raised “substantial doubt” of its ability to carry on as a going concern.

The Greek firm admitted it was in breach of financial covenants and has suspended principal repayments and interest payments for the remaining bank facilities.

Since then, DryShips has raised net proceeds of around $5m by selling convertible preferred shares and some of its common stock to an unnamed institutional investor.

Holly Birkett

Holly is Splash's Online Editor and correspondent for the UK and Mediterranean. She has been a maritime journalist since 2010, and has written for and edited several trade publications. She is currently studying for membership of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers. In 2013, Holly won the Seahorse Club's Social Media Journalist of the Year award. She is currently based in London.

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