Kim Heng enters OSV sector with triple Swiber AHTS acquisition

Singapore’s Kim Heng Offshore & Marine has completed a well-timed entry into offshore support vessel ownership with the purchase of three 10,800 bhp anchor handling tug supply vessels.

While Kim Heng is well-known for its shipyards, it has been an owner of tugs and barges for some time and has taken a step up into the conventional OSV space with the purchase of Swiber vessels Swiber Anne-Christine, Swiber Else-Marie and Swiber Mary-Ann for a total of $9.6m.

Kim Heng says the downturn has enabled the group to acquire the vessels, which were at one time valued at over $30m each, at “extremely low valuations.”

A broking source tell Splash that even 12 months ago “high teens” would have been considered fair market value, adding “these are smart buys as they have bought at true distress levels.”

Thomas Tan, executive chairman and CEO of Kim Heng, commented: “Against a backdrop of uncertainty, it presents an opportunity for us to capitalise and we are pleased that Kim Heng has been able to successfully purchase these vessels to strengthen our long-term position at a fraction of the cost.”

To fund the acquisition, Kim Heng said it would use S$8.5m ($6.14m) of IPO proceeds and S$5.0m ($3.61m) drawn from the existing bank loans.

Grant Rowles

Grant spent nine years at Informa Group based in London, Sydney, Hong Kong and Singapore. He gained strong management experience in publishing, conferences and awards schemes in the shipping and legal areas, working on a number of titles including Lloyd's List. In 2009 Grant joined Seatrade responsible for the commercial development of Seatrade’s Asia products. In 2012, with Sam Chambers, he co-founded Asia Shipping Media.
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