German container line Hapag-Lloyd has secured a 12-year, USD 372 million loan facility from a banking syndicate to fund the construction of the five 10,500 TEU newbuilding container ships ordered back in April at South Korea’s Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries.
The five boxships are expected to be delivered between October 2016 and May 2017. The total investment volume of the order lies in the mid three-digit million USD range, the company says.
The five ordered vessels will be deployed primarily on the South American routes. With 2,100 reefers plugs each, the vessels will be suitable to carry perishable goods.
The banking syndicate was led by joint bookrunners Credit Agricole, DNB, HSBC and UniCredit. As the order was placed with a Korean shipyard, the Korean Export Credit Agencies K-sure and KEXIM agreed to provide financing support for Hapag-Lloyd to facilitate the investment with the Korean yard and will thereby support the overall financing
Hapag-Lloyd decided in parallel to increase its existing revolving credit facility with the financing banking syndicate from USD 95 million to USD 200 million in order to strengthen its liquidity reserves.
Based on the recent ship financing, Hapag-Lloyd also renegotiated conditions for existing vessel financing facilities. In total, the company was thereby able to decrease its interest burden by approximately USD 40 million over the remaining life of these financing facilities.
“We secured the financing for our new vessels at attractive financial terms,” said Nicolás Burr, Chief Financial Officer at Hapag-Lloyd.
“In addition, based on this new benchmark we were able to significantly reduce our interest burden and at the same time gain more financial flexibility by increasing our liquidity commitments.”
Hapag-Lloyd currently owns and operates a fleet of 188 container ships.