Ocean Yield Buys Four LR2 Tanker Newbuildings

Oslo-based shipowning company Ocean Yield ASA has agreed to acquire four newbuilding 115,000 dwt LR2 product tankers for a total consideration of USD 198.1 million, in combination with 13 years “hell and high water” bareboat charters to Navig8 Product Tankers Inc.

The four vessels are being built at Sungdong Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., Ltd, Korea, and are scheduled for delivery in January, March, May and July 2016 respectively.

The vessels are being acquired for USD 49.5 million each, which is equal to the original yard cost and is about 20% below current market value.

“The transaction will be funded by a committed bank facility of USD 148 million, or USD 37 million per vessel, a seller’s credit of USD 10 million, or USD 2.5 million per vessel and the remaining amount with existing cash,” the company said.

Navig8 Product Tankers will have certain options to acquire the vessels during the charter period, with the first option exercisable after seven years.

Furthermore, Ocean Yield will provide Navig8 Product Tankers with an interest bearing pre-delivery loan matching the remaining yard instalments, which will be secured by assignment of the shipbuilding contracts and the refund guarantees.

Navig8 Product Tankers, established in 2013 by the Navig8 Group together with several investment funds as shareholders, has a newbuilding program that comprises 27 vessels, of which 15 LR2s and 12 LR1s, with deliveries expected from September 2015 through 2016. Commercial management is done by the Navig8 Group, which manages 15 shipping pools in three shipping segments and has 332 committed vessels under management.

Ocean Yield ASA’s Chief Executive Officer Lars Solbakken said: “We are pleased to announce the investment in 4 newbuilding product tankers as it allows us to continue to diversify our portfolio and the transaction fits very well with our strategy to invest in modern vessels with long term charters. Due to our strong balance sheet the transaction is done without raising any new equity and the new investment will therefore have a very positive effect on both earnings and dividend capacity per share.”

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