ContainersDry CargoOperationsTankers

Weekly Broker: Bulker feast

The secondhand bulker sale and purchase market in the past week has turned to a feast for owners who are looking to secure tonnage before the year-end, with a large number of ships changing hands, despite the chartering market resuming a sideways movement. The rundown of the sales goes from capes to handies and a look at the ships that are still for sale suggests we’ll see plenty more deals done in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, tanker buyers have also made a nice comeback with concluded sales showing a solid spread of interest across the different sizes.

“On the dry side, the long anticipated boost in activity finally took shape this past week, with numerous transactions coming to light. With buying interest varying across all main segments and all different age groups, it seems as though good sentiment amongst buyers is in abundance now. Moreover, with more than two months to go before the closing of the year, we can anticipate things to heat up further, while at the same, many will keep a closely eye as to how asset prices start to react,” Allied Shipbroking said in its weekly report.

Allied Shipbroking and Lorentzen & Stemoco identified Greek owner Eurobulk as the buyer behind the sale deal of the 2004-built 75,000 dwt panamax bulker Star of Nippon. The Japanese-built vessel was sold by UAE-based owner Pioneer Ship Management for a price of $9.8m.

Multiple shipbroking houses all reported the sale of the 1997-built, 28,000 dwt handysize bulker Baltic Spire. The Japanese-built vessel was sold by Tide Line to Chinese interests for a price of around $5m.

Banchero Costa listed a deal in which Greek owner Mega Shipping acquired the 2011-built 81,400 dwt panamax bulker Daebo Newcastle from South Korean owner Daebo International Shipping. The Korean-built vessel has fetched a price of $18.6m.

Earlier this week, Splash reported Greek owner S-Bulkers has made a quick profit of more than $2m by selling the 2007-built handy bulker Sea Bronze for $9.5m after it acquired the vessel in January this year. Banchero Costa has identified the buyer as Vietnamese company HTK Shipping in its latest report.

According to Fearnleys, Singapore owner Berge Bulk has acquired the 2009-built 176,000 dwt capesize bulker Ocean Clarion from Japanese owner NYK for a price of $29m, continuing a sudden rush by NYK to sell off a swathe of ships following poor financial results.

Splash also understands Greek owner Niovis Shipping has snapped up a resale newbuild 60,000 dwt ultramax bulker at Dalian COSCO KHI Ship Engineering (DACKS) for $27m. The delivery of the vessel is scheduled in March 2019.

“On the tanker side, things seemed considerably more active this past week as well. It seems as though the recent improvement in the freight market has further enticed buyers to act though still not at too aggressive price levels. Notwithstanding this, given that current asset price levels may seem very attractive, on the back of further improvements being heralded in terms of fundamentals, we may well interest rise further over the next couple of months,” Allied Shipbroking said.

Splash has already reported a number of major en bloc sale and purchase deals in the tanker sector in the past week, including Norwegian owner Ocean Yield’s acquisition of two 2015-built chemical tankers from Irish owner Ardmore Shipping in a sale and leaseback deal, and Indonesian owner Pertamina’s takeover of three NYK tankers.

Fearnleys and VesselsValue reported a transaction in which the 2003-built VLCC DS Vida was sold by German owner DS Tankers and identified Greek owner Nicholas G Moundreas family’s NGM Energy as the buyer. The Chinese-built crude tanker has fetched a price of $22.8m.

Optima, Lorentzen & Stemoco and Advanced Shipping & Trading all listed the sale of the 2010-built 45,000 dwt MR tanker Pacific Vega. The Japanese-built vessel was sold by NYK to Transocean for $16.35m.

In the secondhand containership sale and purchase marker, Braemar ACM Shipbroking reported that the 2012-built 4,249 teu boxship Argos has been sold to UK owner Borealis for a price in excess of $14m.

“Although charter rates continued on a steady decline, there has been an uptick in fixing activity as well as enquiry from the lines, an encouraging sign for a struggling market,” Braemar ACM said in its report.

According to Braemar, demolition activities in the containership sector continued to drive forward with more feeders entering the market for sale. The 1990-built 1,752 teu Vasi Sun was sold to scrappers in Bangladesh for a price of $470 per ldt with numerous other feeders in negotiations for recycling.

Jason Jiang

Jason is one of the most prolific writers on the diverse China shipping & logistics industry and his access to the major maritime players with business in China has proved an invaluable source of exclusives. Having been working at Asia Shipping Media since inception, Jason is the chief correspondent of Splash and associate editor of Maritime CEO magazine. Previously he had written for a host of titles including Supply Chain Asia, Cargo Facts and Air Cargo Week.
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