Greek Shipping News Cuts
Week 19 - 2010

 

Greek owners head to Rongsheng on tanker spree

---Shanghai: Brokers reports out this week suggest Greek owners are heading to Jiangsu Rongsheng Heavy Industries for a series of tanker orders.
Meanwhile, Thenamaris is also said to be looking at ordering suezmaxes at Rongsheng with reports suggesting the owner is keen to fix two firm plus two options there.
Source: http://www.seatradeasia-online.com/News/5585.html


Restis tanker venture takes first of six aframaxes
---A ceremony May 11 at the Sungdong shipyard in South Korea saw the first vessel delivered into the fleet of Paramount Tankers, the new tanker operating company jointly owned by AET and Golden Energy, part of the Restis Group.
The new vessel Paramount Hanover is the 51st aframax tanker under AET management.
Paramount Tankers has placed orders for six aframax tankers with the Sungdong yard with the remaining five ships due to be delivered later this year. The new vessel was formally named by YBhg Datin Salwa, wife of YBhg Dato' Shamsul Azhar Abbas, president and ceo of Malaysia's national oil company, Petronas.
Presiding over the ceremony was AET president and ceo Hor Weng Yew who said: "AET will provide the commercial management for Paramount Hanover and her five sister ships when they are delivered. The delivery of our 51st aframax tanker confirms our position as one of the largest owner-operators of aframax tankers in the world and marks another key milestone in the continued growth of AET. We are pleased to be working with the Restis Group and these new ships."
The partnership with the Athens-based Restis is part of AET's plans to continue to grow both in size and experience. AET maintains a young and technologically advanced fleet of 72 ships consisting of aframax tankers, VLCCs and product tankers. Its current newbuilding programme of 15 ships is part of its fleet rejuvenation and expansion programme as it seeks extend the breadth and depth of its global footprint in the petroleum shipping industry.
The addition of Paramount Tankers to the Restis stable comes as it is also revealed shipowner/business entrepreneur Victor Restis has splashed out Euro 30m acquirying a 30-year lease for the Montenegro island of Sveti Stefan, which contains a 15th Century village within the walls a large castle which is converted into a hotel comprising 47 villa suites.
Through the company First Business Balkan, the Restis group has been an active investor in the Balkans. In the area of Sveti Stefan some Euro 90m has been invested. It has also been an active bidder for projects mounted by Montenegro, including power supply. Another Euro 200m was invested in a 66,000sqmtr shopping mall in central Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. Boasting a 2,800-capacity car park the mall was purchased from Carrefour.
-- Filed: 2010-05-11
Source: www.newsfront.gr


Crude swells tanker fleet to five in wake of IPO
---Just two months after its initial public offering (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), Crude Carriers Corp has boosted its fleet to five tankers of more than one million dwt and has the option to acquire a third VLCC.
The Evangelos Marinakis-led company used the $257m proceeds of its IPO plus a $40m capital injection from Crude Carriers Investments Corp to buy its first two VLCC newbuildings for $96.5m each and a 2006-built suezmax for $71.25m.
It kicked off its operations with the 298,000-dwt Alexander the Great, delivered in March from Universal Shipbuilding of Japan, and the ice-class 1A, 163,000-dwt Miltiadis M II (built 2006).
The Achilleas, the second VLCC, is slated for delivery at the end of June.
The company will focus on the spot market and says it is well positioned to take advantage of the recent firming spot-market rates.
Marinakis has stated his aim is to make Crude one of the leaders in the crude-tanker industry and has shown his own belief in its potential with a personal investment of $40m in the company.
Working toward fleet-growth aims, last week Crude announced that it had secured a one-year option to acquire another VLCC newbuilding. Capital Maritime & Trading Corp, a private company also controlled by Marinakis, paid $108m to buy the resale contract for the 320,000-dwt Atlantas. Delivery of the tanker from Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering is expected on around 20 May. From the date of delivery Crude has the option to purchase the vessel at the same price, plus delivery costs.
From the time the first two ?VLCCs were bought it was mooted that Marinakis had acquired them at a three-year price low. This size of tanker is currently valued at around $110m to $115m. Crude has also said it picked up its three suezmaxes for an average price of $68m each, while the current market value for such vessels ranges from $71m to $74m.
By Gillian Whittaker Athens
Published: 21:59 GMT, 12 May 10 | updated: 21:02 GMT, 11 May 10
Source: www.tradewinds.no


FreeSeas Announces Charter Agreements on Six of Its Handysize Vessels at Rates Reflecting Strong Market Conditions
---PIRAEUS, Greece, May 11, 2010 (GlobeNewswire via COMTEX) ??FreeSeas Inc. (Nasdaq:FREE) (Nasdaq:FREEW) (Nasdaq:FREEZ) ("FreeSeas'' or the "Company''), a transporter of dry bulk cargoes through the ownership and operation of a fleet of eight Handysize vessels and two Handymax vessels, announced today new charters for six of its vessels.
Mr. Ion Varouxakis, Chief Executive Officer of FreeSeas, stated, "We are pleased to report steadily improving rates for our vessels and we continue to build on our spot chartering strategy. We believe that our fleet is well-positioned to take advantage of the current upturn in the dry bulk market, as a result of our strategic decision last year to operate our Handysize vessels in the spot market. We are encouraged with the recent demand-driven improvement in the dry bulk market, especially for Handysize vessels, as evidenced by the considerable gains shown by the Baltic Dry Index recently. We remain focused in our effort to enhance our cash flow and strengthen our financial position."
The new charters are detailed below:
* The M/V Free Destiny, a 1982-built, 25,240 dwt Handysize vessel, has been chartered for a time charter trip of approximately 45-55 days at a daily rate of $10,750.
* The M/V Free Envoy, a 1984-built, 26,318 dwt Handysize vessel, has been chartered for a time charter trip of approximately 30 days at a daily rate of $15,000.
* The M/V Free Goddess, a 1995-built, 22,051 dwt Handysize vessel, has been chartered for a time charter trip of approximately 15 days at a daily rate of $14,000. The vessel commenced this new time charter following its completion of a time charter trip of approximately 18 days at a daily rate of $15,500.
* The M/V Free Hero, a 1995-built, 24,318 dwt Handysize vessel, has been chartered for a time charter trip of approximately 40-45 days at a daily rate of $18,000.
* The M/V Free Impala, a 1997-built, 24,111 dwt Handysize vessel, has been chartered for a time charter trip of approximately 30 days at a daily rate of $20,000.
* The M/V Free Knight, a 1998-built, 24,111 dwt Handysize vessel, has been chartered for a time charter trip of approximately 25-30 days at a daily rate of $15,500. The vessel is expected to be delivered to its new charterer following its scheduled dry-dock, which is expected to be completed shortly.
Vessel Name / Type / Built / Dwt / Employment
M/V Free Destiny Handysize 1982 25,240 45-55 day time charter trip at $10,750 per day through May/June 2010
M/VFree Envoy Handysize 1984 26,318 30 day time charter trip at $15,000 per day through June 2010
M/V Free Goddess Handysize 1995 22,051 15 day time charter trip at $14,000 per day through May 2010
M/V Free Hero Handysize 1995 24,318 40-45 day time charter at $18,000 per day through June 2010
M/V Free Impala Handysize 1997 24,111 30 day time charter trip at $20,000 per day through June 2010
M/V Free Jupiter Handymax 2002 47,777 Balance of time charter at $25,216 per day through February 2011 and any day in excess at $28,000 per day through May 2011
M/V Free Knight Handysize 1998 24,111 25-30 day time charter trip at $15,500 per day through June 2010
M/V Free Lady Handymax 2003 50,246 Balance of time charter at $51,150 per day through June 2010
M/V Free Maverick Handysize 1998 23,994 60?110 day time charter trip at $15,000 per day through May/July 2010
M/V Free Neptune Handysize 1996 30,838 60-100 day time charter trip at $25,000 per day through June/July 2010
*The average net charter rates per vessel realized by the Company will depend on actual repositioning time and bunkers consumed between successive chartering employments, as well as potential operational off?hires. The above table is provided for indicative purposes only, and should not to be deemed to reflect actual operating revenues received from employment of vessels.
About FreeSeas Inc . FreeSeas Inc. is a Marshall Islands corporation with principal offices in Piraeus, Greece. FreeSeas is engaged in the transportation of dry bulk cargoes through the ownership and operation of dry bulk carriers. Currently, it has a fleet of eight Handysize vessels and two Handymax vessels. FreeSeas' common stock and warrants trade on the NASDAQ Global Market under the symbols FREE, FREEW and FREEZ, respectively. Risks and uncertainties are described in reports filed by FreeSeas Inc. with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which can be obtained free of charge on the SEC's website at http://www.sec.gov. For more information about FreeSeas Inc., please visit the corporate website, http://www.freeseas.gr.
Source: http://www.freeseas.gr


Greek fund targets dry bulk sector
---Julian Macqueen - Thursday 13 May 2010
A NEW private equity fund is seeking to capitalise on the absence of traditional ship finance in the marketplace by investing in dry bulk ships.
The proceeds will then be ploughed back into smaller-sized dry bulk vessels, such as handysizes and smaller panamaxes.
Once assets have been identified and purchased, they will be managed by a Greek shipmanagement company, Danad Shipping. This will be an exclusive, commercial relationship.
The fund is being pitched at both private and institutional investors from a wide geographical spread. Investors would get involved through buying ordinary shares in the fund.
The fund is incorporated with limited liability in the Cayman Islands as a closed-ended investment company.
Source: http://www.lloydslist.com


Greece moves forward with tender for intermodal hub near Piraeus Port
---Balkan Business News Correspondent - 14.05.2010,
Piraeus is the only port of the European Union in the East Mediterranean with the biggest and most important Container Terminal. The Container Terminal operates within a short distance from the center of Piraeus. The position is considered ideal as it is tide free and has sufficient depth to provide service even to the largest container vessels ordered today.
The infrastructure of the port is being expanded with the extension of Pier I, the renewal of equipment of Pier II and the construction of a new Pier III, aiming to the improvement of eff ectiveness and the accommodation of the increasing demand.
Source: http://www.balkans.com/open-news.php?uniquenumber=57224


Some 20,000 trade visitors are expected to attend the exhibition, breaking the previous record set in 2008. Organisers expect to welcome more than 1,700 exhibitors from 80 countries.
Posidonia 2010 is sponsored by the Greek Ministry of Economy, Competitiveness and Shipping, the Municipality of Piraeus, the Hellenic Chamber of Shipping, the Union of Greek Shipowners.
Press & Communication Office, Embassy of Greece in Beijing
Source: Global Times, http://world.globaltimes.cn/europe/2010-05/531501.html


Major Greek-Turkish business forum
The forum brings together dozens of top Turkish and 200 Greek businesses leaders and entrepreneurs.
A total of 65 bilateral meetings have been scheduled, covering the construction, building materials, energy, banking, foodstuffs, sea transport and clothing sectors, with the (ANA-MPA) aim to promote joint ventures and expand activities in third countries, particularly in southeastern Europe and the wider eastern Mediterranean basin.
The Greek-Turkish business forum was inaugurated by Greek government vice-president Theodoros Pangalos, Turkish Deputy PM Ali Babacan and Greek Deputy FM Spyros Kouvelis.
Out of the 250 Greek businesses participating in the forum, 75 have already established activities in Turkey.
As of roughly 4 p.m. (local time), more than 200 meetings between Greek and Turkish business people had taken place, Thanasis Lavidas, the vice-president of the Federation of Hellenic Enterprises, told reporters.
The meetings were extremely interesting, Lavidas, said, adding that Turkey was an exceptional strategic economic partner for Greek enterprises, while at the same time, Greece was a significant pole for attracting investments by Turkish businesses and a bridge towards expanding in other geographical areas.
Lavidas stressed, however, that more decisive steps and initiatives were necessary to boost bilateral relations.
Speaking to reporters, Selim Egeli, president of the Greek-Turkish Business Council, said the business forum will result to the signing of 21 agreements in financial activity. (ANA-MPA)
He underlined that the two countries have signed only seven such agreements in the period from 1950 to 1999 and underlined the major significance of the agreement to be announced, which will affect the future of economic relations between the two countries. (ANA-MPA)
Egeli said there are significant joint opportunities for growth in sectors of tourism, constructions and business partnerships. (ANA-MPA)
Source: http://www.ana-mpa.gr/anaweb/user/showplain?maindoc=8716918&maindocimg=8716072&service=98


Strike at Piraeus port blocks cruise ships with 5,000 passengers
The Armonia and Musicale cruise ships and their 5,000 passengers have been staying blocked outside the port for three hours because of the strike of tugboat workers.
Eventually, the ships will have to berth at the port without using the services of a tugboat.
A guides from one of the ships commented for Skai that these actions bear negative effect on tourism, which is the only source for revenues in the country, adding that other ships with around 15,000 cruisers are expected next week.
Source: 13 May 2010 | 10:30 | FOCUS News Agency, http://www.focus-fen.net/index.php?id=n219551