Greek Shipping News Cuts
Week 24 - 2008

 

Among faces launching 1,000 ships

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*Posidonia Today. Issue Nr. 1, Monday 2 June 2008*
John Angelicoussis
A big portion of the 60 ships were built since the millennium and all but a handful fly the Greek flag.
Current orderbook: 14 tankers, VLCC to handymax and 22 bulkers from capsize to panamax.
George Economou
Current orderbook:14 tankers, suezmax/aframax, two ultra-deepwater drillships, and 23 bulk carriers ranging in size from capsize to panamax.
Nicos Tsakos
Nicos Tsakos heads up US-listed TEN, which has built 53 tankers in a decade.
George Prokopiou
The current orderbook is: 14 tankers, VLCC to panamax, plus a return to dry shipping sees 14 bulkers contracted, capsize to panamax.
*Posidonia Today. Issue Nr. 2, Tuesday 3 June 2008*
Victor Restis
An operator of reefer ships ,the Restis group through Enterprises Shipping & Trading / Golden Energy has switched focus and now runs 61 ships of 4.9m dwt - 46 bulkers, 13 tankers and two reefers. Six tankers of 115,000dwt, a chem. tanker and 15 bulkers from capes to supramaxe are on order. Victor Restis is also an investor in US-listed shipping companies.
Peter Georgiopoulos
Controls 4.6m dwt, 21 tankers and 28 bulkers with four capes on order.
Angeliki Frankou
Leading player in sea of change sweeping shipping. From traditional shipping family and operator of bulk carriers, she floated a $200m blank cheque company end 2004, purchased Navios Maritime for $600m, followed it with a $200m swoop for Kleimar and has since expanded in the logistics market. Runs 35 bulkers of 2.8m dwt and holds purchase options on five newbuilds.
Gregory Callimanopulos
From liner ships to bulk carriers to tankers and now offshore, Callimanopulos has been a leader in diversification.
Under the Marine Management Services and Toisa banners runs nine tankers and 24 offshore supply vessels. Fleet capacity of 1.126dwt.
Four suezmax and three aframax tankers, a handysize bulker and five offshore supply ships are on order.
*Posidonia Today. Issue Nr. 3, Wednesday 4 June 2008*
Wet and dry bulk ships are usually associated with Greek ship operators. Container ships, gas carriers and reefers are not the norm ,however, Greeks are among the prominent players in these sectors too.
Vassilios Constantakopoulos
From one small ship in 1974, Captain Vassilios Constantakopoulos has built Costamare Shipping into one of the largest independent container ship fleets of some 58 ships of 3.1m dwt for a total capacity of 230,024teu, many ships built by the owner, most fly the Greek flag. Four ships of 8,533teu (101,000dwt) are to be delivered from Hudong-Zhonghau mid-2009 to mid-2010.
John Coustas
Massive investment in newbuildings, has 34 ships on order, including five of 12,600teu and three of 10,100teu.
Panos Laskaridis
Harry Vafias
Father, Nicos founded bulker company Brave Maritime in 1987. In 2001 Harry,23, created tanker business Stealth and quickly the Brave / Stealth fleet grew to just under 2m dwt. Broke into LPGs end 2004 with Stealthgas which he floated in the US in 2006 and has hardly stopped for air since becoming a major player in niche small gas carried sector. Fleet now 54 ships, 37 LPGs, of total 1.34m dwt. Has 17 ships on order, five handymax and 87,000dwt bulkers, two aframax tankers and eight LPGs
*Posidonia Today. Issue Nr. 3, Thursday 5 June 2008*
Nicos Fistes
Polys Haji-Ioannou
Dimitris Melissanides
Founder of US-listed Aegean Petroleum group which has embarked on a massive expansion programme in the bunkering and logistics sectors.
Since the Piraeus-based company floated a $200m-plus IPO on the NYSE in late 2006, it has been involved in a number of buyouts and lifted 2007 sales to $1.5bn. Runs some 45 bunker and supply tankers and has some 35 bunker and supply tankers on order.
Spyros Polemis
A leading spokesman for shipping as president of ICS and chairman of ISF. The Polemis family can trance its roots back to Byzantium times. Strong shipping links since about 1780. He has been involved in both the operation of wet and dry ships, but is presently in the process of building a niche market energy carrying fleet and rebewing the bulk carrier side of the company.
Ten high spec 17,000dwt chemtankers and two 177,000dwt bulkers are on order, all in China.
Source: Posidonia Today. The Official daily Newspaper, published by Seatrade & Naftiliaki.


Greeks look to blend traditional strengths with market gains
---Listening to Nikolas Tsakos, one of Greece's leading shipowners, talking about his grandmother reveals much about why his compatriots control such a high proportion of the world's ships.
Even as she neared her death aged 98 in 2001, Tsakos recalls, Maria Tsakos continued to believe there was no higher calling for a man than that of a sea captain - a role which in her formative years also equated with being a shipowner. It reflected the value system during her childhood on the Aegean island of Chios in the early 1900s.
"When you would introduce her to someone who was a doctor or a lawyer, she would say, 'Oh dear, the poor man couldn't become a captain'," Tsakos recalls.
Yet the story of Tsakos' grandmother also illustrates how readily Greece's traditional shipowning culture has adapted to the growing complexity and scale of demands on the sector. When Tsakos' grandmother was growing up, her family, who have owned ships since 1880, were captain-shipowners taking Chios's lemons and other cargoes around the Mediterranean. In 1970, her son, Panagiotis Tsakos, founded the private Tsakos Group, which owns 61 vessels, mainly dry bulk carriers for products such as iron ore.
By the time she died, another family enterprise, Tsakos Energy Navigation (Ten), whose chief executive is Nikolas Tsakos, was listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The company, which owns 43 oil and gas tankers, is still 30 per cent owned by family interests.
The half-public, half-private model is becoming increasingly common among the clutch of larger owners that stand out among the 1,000-plus shipowning companies in the country.
George Economou, chief executive of DryShips, the largest publicly listed dry bulk shipowner with 38 ships, holds another 52 dry bulk ships and 23 tankers through Cardiff Marine, his private company.
Stelios Haji-Ioannou, founder of easyJet, the budget airline, founded Stelmar, a New York-listed tanker operator since taken over by a competitor, before entering the airline business. At the same time, his father was maintaining privately held Troodos Shipping, one of the world's largest owners of oil tankers.
The challenge for Greek shipowners is to blend the advantages that come from public listings with the traditional strengths of the privately owned companies.
According to Nikolas Tsakos, the listing trend started partly because of the pressure, after pollution disasters such as 1989's Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska, to be open and accountable.
Need for maturity
He became interested in public listing after writing a thesis at London's City University in the 1980s on the role of publicly listed partnerships in real estate, which he saw as a similar industry to shipowning.
"I felt that the industry needed to mature and go onto the equity markets," Tsakos says. The family first listed the now-defunct Global Ocean Carriers on the American Stock Exchange in 1988 and took TEN public - initially on the Oslo Stock Exchange - in 1993.
Gabriel Panayotides, chairman and controlling shareholder of Athens-based, New York-listed Excel Maritime, says listing has also brought quicker, easier access to capital than the traditional accumulation of retained profits. "The capital markets do offer this mechanism of being able to attract large capital," he says.
Public listing also guarantees owners their legacy will not dissipate like that of Aristotle Onassis and the other Golden Greeks who dominated the post-second world war shipping boom, according to John Coustas, president and chief executive of Danaos Corporation, an Athens-based, New York-listed shipowner.
"If you look around all the big names of the 1960s - Niarchos, Onassis, Latsis, every one guys who were really kings of the oceans - now their presence is either zero or minimal," he says. "That's because really nobody in the second generation was interested."
However, the worry is that Greek owners' traditional adroitness in buying or selling ships just as volatile markets are changing could be sapped by the need to meet public disclosure requirements.
By Robert Wright, Published: June 08, 2008, 23:39
Source: http://www.gulfnews.com/business/Shipping/10219545.html


Surging finance costs squeeze smaller owners
---As shipping continues to boom, global financial markets remain under intense pressure. The implications of the financial crisis for shipowners are profound
If the optimists are to be believed, the global financial crisis is finally winding down. But even if the capital markets return to functioning normally, the environment for ship finance has changed.
Source: http://www.fairplay.co.uk


Former banker brings ruthless approach
---By Robert Wright, Transport Correspondent
Published: June 11 2008 16:27 | Last updated: June 11 2008 16:27
Tall and broad-shouldered, Peter Georgiopoulos opens the door of his London hotel suite and offers a large, firm hand to shake. With a sharp suit, a tan, hair slightly longer than normal for a businessman and his surname, he could easily be mistaken for a younger member of a Greek shipping dynasty.
His approach has been vital to restoring US investor interest in shipping, according to one shipbroker. Many had previously been deterred by series of messy listings by Greek shipping companies, some of which ended up insolvent.
Mr Georgiopoulos started his career in shipbroking before leaving for investment banking when there was a downturn in the shipping markets. On returning to shipping, he set up Maritime Equity Management as a private investment vehicle, whose first investments were in Norway. Many shipowning companies there were in financial trouble after advantageous tax arrangements were abolished.
Mr Georgiopoulos slowly bought up shares in the troubled partnerships and then took control of the assets.
The vehicle changed names to General Maritime Corporation in 1997, before listing in 2001 on the New York Stock Exchange. Mr Georgiopoulos retains 13.7 per cent of General Maritime, 13 per cent of Genco and 10 per cent of Aegean Marine.
He explains coolly that the financial ratios are too poor. His investments in Genco and Aegean Marine were motivated by the search for an area offering better profits.
However, Mr Georgiopoulos knows other shipowners have kept buying ships at ever-higher prices to capitalise on rising freight rates. He is proud to be different.
Navigating the markets
In the early years of General Maritime, nearly all its vessels were initially on long-term charters, but General Maritime made use of a provision which allowed it to break the contracts for a fee as the spot market started to run up towards a sharp spike in 2005.
Source: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/553a6256-37c9-11dd-aabb-0000779fd2ac.html


Newsfront's On and Off the Akti Miaouli
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> Shipowner Simeon Palios says a global shortage of drydocks for repairs is buoying charter rates.
> The Restis group has established a hedge fund, Argonaut to trade in shipping equities aimed at institutional investors. Target for start-up capital is $50m with the aim of exceeding $100m by year's end. Trading in the freight-derivatives market is also an objective. Athens-based Naftilia Asset Management is acting as an advisor to Argonaut which will have exposure in the bulker, tanker, offshore/supply, LNG, LPG and cruise sectors. The Restis investment services company, Oxygen Capital will manage Argonaut, which is likely to be the first of a number of funds Oxygen will launch.
Recently, Los Angeles-based Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors reported a 10.2% stake in ONE.
> The Angelicoussis group and US investment bank Goldman Sachs have formed a jv, Angold to operate bulk carriers, with Anangel Maritime Services' 1999-built, 171,000dwt Anangel Dynasty and Anangel Eternity forming the initial fleet, which will be managed and operated by Anangel.
Angelicoussis interests hold a slightly larger stake in the Greek-flag ships. Goldman Sachs already has a significant investment in commodities and shipping is seen a natural extension of a longstanding relationship.
> Aegean Marine Petroleum Network aims to be the world's largest owner of double hull bunker tankers by 2010, but says it has not looked at Russia a vast market in need of double hull bunker tankers. President of the US-listed company, E. Nikolas Tavlarios told Bunkerworld recently he expected the Russian government's ban on single hull tankers below 5,000dwt by the end of 2008 to tighten the market significantly. In St. Petersburg, enforcement of the decision would lead to a complete breakdown in bunker deliveries as all of the 40 or so bunker barges in the port are single-hull.
The Russian Transportation ministry announced last month the country's tanker fleet would be brought into conformity with the Marpol convention. Bunker suppliers in the country told Bunkerworld enforcing the single-hull ban would put them in an "impossible situation" and said some kind of compromise must be found. Tavlarios said he thought it would be difficult for Russian authorities to go back on its decision, and it would enforce the single-hull ban to some extent, which would tighten supply.
Aegean has 19 double-hulled tankers and is set to take delivery of another 25 over the next two years but breaking into the Russian market would be difficult as two state-owned energy giants, Rosneft and Gazprom are there and have made no secret of their intention to grab major market share in the country.
Source: www.newsfront.gr, 13 June 2008 Vol. 9 / No. 23


UGS head Nicos Efthymiou: Seeking Practical,Global Solutions
---UGS head Nicos Efthymiou says the roots of good regulation are practicality and awareness of its effects on the interdependent world of today.
He is particularly concerned about the spread of the Sulfur Oxide Emission Control Area (SECA) as a solution to controlling exhaust emissions from merchant ships. An outgrowth of amendments to the MARPOL Convention Annex VI, governing air pollution from ships, the SECA designation means that the sulfur content of fuel oil used onboard ships in the area must not exceed 1.5 percent or alternatively, the ship must be fi tted with an exhaust gas cleaning system.
Although one cannot blame IMO for the failure of member States to uphold their regulatory responsibilities, the sludge reception issue illustrates the folly in mandating a solution that expects it. Still, says Efthymiou, the sludge reception failure does not imply IMO cannot act quickly and decisively and receive the support of its members when necessary, pointing as example to the rapid passage and ratification of the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code.
Environmental Track Record
A Mandate or a Duty?
Even without explicit considerations in the EU communique, Efthymiou is glad to see it express the need for practical and economically viable solutions. One proposal the UGS is putting forward involves slow steaming, a percentage reduction in ship speed at some pre-agreed distance from the shore or port. By cutting speed the ship cuts fuel consumption, meaning the move will have an immediate impact on cutting emissions.
There are already requirements to reduce speed as a vessel approaches certain ports, and while some individual shipping lines are voluntarily engaging in more extensive slow steaming, Efthymiou says the real benefi t will come when it is mandated across the board. He says the actual turning point in reducing emissions occurs at around a 20 to 25 percent reduction of speed, which is why the UGS is suggesting a 20-percent slowdown.
For the moment, the UGS proposal remains an expression of industry willingness to take immediate positive action. In order to produce effective results, he says, it requires the force of a regulatory mandate. Slow steaming will only work if absolutely everyone does it and, everyone will only do it if there is a directive to do so.
Source: "Surveyor. Summer 2008. A Quarterly Magazine from ABS, avilable at: www.eagle.org


GSCC opposes CO2 Taxes
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Thursday, 12 June 2008
IN his introduction to the latest Greek Shipping Co-operation Committee Annual report the London based body's chairman Epaminondas Embiricos says the GSCC has made clear it opposition to CO2 taxes to Greece's shipping minister.
Source: www.mgn.com


Cosco provisional tender winner
---The Piraeus Port Authority's board on Thursday declared Cosco Pacific Ltd as provisional tender winner in a tender to lease the management of the port's two main cargo terminals for a period of 35 years.
Cosco Pacific has made the highest bid in the tender. Under the terms of the tender, the Chinese company will have to submit additional paperwork before beginning a round of negotiations with the Piraeus Port Authority over the contract. In a related development, Merchant Marine Minister George Voulgarakis on Thursday reiterated the government's will to upgrade the country's major ports and the coastal shipping sector in order to attract more shipping capital and transform the port of Piraeus into an international shipping center.
Source: Athens News Agency, Greece - Jun 12, 2008


Shipowners want to lay issues on table
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NIKOS BARDOUNIAS
Ferry passengers could purchase fares as much as 33 percent lower if the state should decide to abolish third-party levies on tickets, according to the new president of the Coastal Shipowners Union (EEA), Apostolos Ventouris.
Speaking at a press conference yesterday, he argued there are no cartel practices in the industry and that the companies will assist the Competition Commission in its job of monitoring prices by supplying any data requested. Ventouris added that coastal shipowners want to open a dialogue with the ministries of Merchant Marine and Economy to find solutions to the various economic and institutional issues that affect the efficiency of their businesses.
Source: http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_economyepix_2_10/06/2008_97530


Angelicoussis in Goldman link-up
---A US investment bank is moving into the big-bulker sector in a Greek tie-up.
Greece's Angelicoussis group and US investment bank Goldman Sachs have linked up in a joint venture that will initially own two capesize bulkers with a view to expansion.
Anangel Maritime Services executives confirm the tie-up and say the 171,000-dwt Anangel Dynasty and Anangel Eternity (both built 1999) have been purchased by the new entity, to be known as Angold.
No price has been revealed on the transaction.
Management and operation of the ships will remain with Anangel.
It is understood that ownership is almost equally split between the two with the Angelicoussis interests holding just marginally more. Both capesizes are under the Greek flag, which requires a majority Greek ownership interest.
Goldman Sachs vice-president for media relations Ed Canaday notes that the bank already has a significant investment in commodities "and shipping is a natural extension".
"We see shipping as a large, growing industry and the cyclical nature of it has potential to offer significant investment opportunities," he said.
Canaday would not comment on a possible expansion of the joint venture but said: "We are always looking for opportunities."
Angelicoussis is understood to have a long-standing relationship with Goldman Sachs on the investment and securities side, which led them to join forces on this project.
Sources close to the deal suggest that both sides believe there are a lot of synergies and areas where they can complement each other.
Goldman Sachs already has a number of shipping investments and last year, together with private-equity outfit DE Shaw and a handful of private investors, injected $250m in cash and $550m in loans into China's Jiangsu Rongsheng Heavy Industries.
TradeWinds reported last month that the backers now hold 20% of the yard's equity.
By Gillian Whittaker, Athens, published: 13 June 2008
Source: www.tradewinds.no


Aries Maritime appoints new CFO; Completes sale of 3 vessels
---Thursday, 12 June 2008
Aries Maritime Transport Limited (NASDAQ: RAMS) today announced it has appointed Ioannis Makris as the Company's Chief Financial Officer, effective immediately.
Mr. Makris, 40, has approximately 15 years of experience in finance and shipping. Previously, he served as a Banking Executive at Cardiff Marine Inc., one of the largest Greek-based shipping companies. Prior to that, Mr. Makris was a Finance and Accounting Manager at Niki Shipping Company Inc., a private shipping company based in Athens. He began his career at Ernst & Young, where he was an auditor and a consultant from 1993 to 1996. Mr. Makris received a BS in Economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science and an MS in Economics from Birkbeck College in London. He is a Chartered Certified Accountant.
Mons S. Bolin, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, "We are delighted to welcome Ioannis Makris to Aries Maritime. His financial expertise and in-depth experience in the shipping industry provides an ideal fit for our Company."
The Company also announced that it has completed the sale of the Arius, a 1986-built double-hull products tanker, as well as the Energy 1, a 1989-built container vessel, and its sister ship, the MSC Oslo, for a net price totalling $60.8 million. With the delivery of these three vessels, Aries expects to realize a book profit of approximately $16 million during the second quarter of 2008. The Company will use the proceeds to reduce outstanding borrowings under its fully revolving credit facility.
Mr. Bolin added, "We are pleased to complete the sale of our three oldest vessels, as planned. With this strategic action, we have considerably enhanced our fleet profile and strengthened our financial flexibility for the benefit of the Company and its shareholders."
Last Updated ( Thursday, 12 June 2008 )
Source: http://www.bymnews.com/news/newsDetails.php?id=28006


Top Ships reports first quarter 2008 financial results
For the three months ended March 31, 2008, the Company reported net loss of $18,841,000, or $0.93 per share, compared with net income of $2,999,000, or $0.28 per share, for the first quarter of 2007. The weighted average numbers of basic shares used in the computations were 20,295,240 and 10,777,043 for the first quarter of 2008 and 2007, respectively. The results for the first quarter of 2008 and 2007 include net charges of $16,737,000, or $0.83 per share and net revenues of $980,000, or $0.09 per share, respectively, of special items that affected the Company's net results for the first quarter of 2008 and 2007 that are typically excluded by securities analysts in their published estimates of the Company's financial results, which are described in Appendix A of this release. For the three months ended March 31, 2008, operating loss was $2,434,000, compared with operating income of $3,448,000 for the first quarter of 2007. Revenues for the first quarter of 2008 were $72,637,000, compared to $73,988,000 recorded in the first quarter of 2007.
Evangelos J. Pistiolis, President and Chief Executive Officer of TOP Ships Inc., commented:
We expect to recover approximately $6,500,000 from our insurance underwriters during the second, third and fourth quarters of 2008 with respect to these and previous unexpected repairs, that will significantly offset these charges.
The special non-cash charges we incurred relate mostly to the change of fair value of swaps that was caused by the significant decrease of the interest rates in the first quarter. All special items are described in the Appendix of this earnings release.
Consistent with our strategy to operate a fleet with a balanced employment profile, and in order to further reduce our spot market exposure, we concluded a number of significant time charter arrangements for our dry-bulk and tanker vessels.
Regarding our dry-bulk fleet, we have previously announced the time charter arrangements for the Cyclades and Astrale at $50,860 net per day for three years and $67,500 net per day for one year respectively. In addition, we have recently agreed to charter the Pepito for a period of five years at a net daily rate of $38,950. Finally we have agreed to extend the bareboat charter of the Voc Gallant after its current expiration in May 2009. The extended agreement will have an additional period of three years at a net daily bareboat rate of $23,580.
Regarding our tanker fleet, we have recently concluded chartering agreements for all six of our newbuilding product tankers with three major charterers. The new charter periods range between seven and ten years at daily rates between $14,300 and $14,550 on a bareboat basis. Since in bareboat agreements the charterers are responsible for the operating, maintenance and other administrative expenses, we estimate that the daily rates for these bareboat charters to be in excess of $21,500 for the period, on a time charter equivalent basis.
Fleet Report:
In December 2007, the Company entered into an agreement to sell the vessel M/T Noiseless to an unrelated party. The gain from the sale of $0.6 million was recognized upon the delivery of the vessel to the buyer on January 30, 2008.
In August 2007, the Company entered into an agreement to acquire the M/V Astrale, a panamax drybulk vessel of 75,933 dwt built in Japan in 2000, from an unrelated third party with an expected delivery date between January and March 2008. In February 2008, the Company agreed with the owners of the M/V Astrale to charter the vessel up to April 27, 2008, for a daily hire. On May 1, 2008, the Company took ownership of the M/V Astrale, which was entered into a time charter contract for a period of 1 year at a net daily rate of $67,500. As the ownership of the vessel was transferred to the Company at the end of the charter the Company accounted for the purchase and related charter as a capital lease.
In February 2008, the Company took delivery of the M/V Voc Gallant, a super handymax, or supramax, drybulk vessel of 51,200 dwt built in China in 2002, from an unrelated third party. The vessel was chartered back to the sellers for a period of 18 months at a daily net rate of $25,650 on a bareboat basis. This employment agreement was later extended for an additional period of three years at a daily net rate of $23,580.
In March 2008, the Company took delivery of the M/V Pepito, a panamax drybulk vessel of 75,928 dwt built in Japan in 2001 and entered into a time charter contract for a period of 5 years at a net daily rate of $38,950.
Fleet Deployment:
Tanker Vessels:
Drybulk Vessels:
Liquidity and Capital Resources
In December 2007 and in April 2008, the Company raised $120.0 million of equity capital to fund its diversification in the dry bulk sector and its newbuilding program. All drybulk vessels of the Company have been chartered in long-term employment agreements that are expected to provide a secured stream of drybulk revenues. Moreover, the long-term employment agreements for the majority of the tanker fleet, in combination with the significantly improved spot market rates are expected to increase tanker revenues.
Therefore, the Company expects that its working capital generation, in combination with the existing cash balances and its recent equity offerings will be sufficient to cover its liquidity requirements for the next year, other than the financing of the newbuildings. The Company is currently in the process of obtaining debt financing for the newbuildings.
As of March 31, 2008, the Company has three interest rate swap agreements with RBS for the amounts of $28.5 million, $10.0 million and $10.0 million for a remaining period of one, five and five years, respectively. Under these agreements the interest rate is fixed at an effective annual rate of 4.66% (in addition to the applicable margin), 4.23% and 4.11%, respectively. The Company also has one interest rate swap agreement with HSH for the amount of $36.4 million for a remaining period of three years, at a fixed interest rate of 4.80% in addition to the applicable margin. The Company also has one interest rate swap agreement with Egnatia Bank for the amount of $10.0 million for a remaining period of five years, respectively. Under this agreement the interest rate is fixed at an effective annual rate of 4.76%. In addition, the Company has two interest rate swap agreements with HSH for the amounts of $17.9 million and $8.3 million for a remaining period of five years. The above swaps of $10.0 million, $10.0 million and $10.0 million, include steepening terms based on the two and 10 year U.S. Dollar swap difference, which is calculated quarterly in arrears. The interest rate for the remaining balance of the loans is LIBOR, plus the margin.
In November 2007, the Company entered into an interest rate derivative product. Under this agreement, the Company will pay five annual interest payments on a notional amount of $85.0 million. Based on the cumulative performance of a portfolio of systematic foreign exchange trading strategies, the interest payments will have a minimum floor at 0.00% and a cap at 7.50%.
In April 2008, the Company mutually agreed with Deutsche Bank for the termination of the $50.0 million swap. The Company is in the process of restructuring all or part of the then outstanding amount.
In May 2008, the Company entered into an interest rate swap agreement for a notional amount of $20.0 million for a seven year period. This swap includes steepening terms based on the two and 10 year Euro swap difference, which is calculated quarterly in arrears.
In April 2008, the Company privately placed 7.3 million common unregistered shares for aggregate proceeds of approximately $51.0 million with various investors. The 7.3 million shares were sold for $7.00 per share, which represents a discount of 15.5 percent based on the closing share price of $8.28 on April 23, 2008.
In April 2008, following the sale of M/V Bertram, the then outstanding loan amount was fully repaid. In May 2008, the Company took delivery of the drybulk vessel M/V Astrale. The acquisition cost was partially financed through a long-term bank loan, maturing in April 2013.
In addition, in May 2008, the Company paid the second installment for the construction of two vessels, which was partly financed from the revolving credit facility with RBS. Finally, in May 2008, following the private placement, the Company prepaid a portion from the bridge loan with DVB Bank.
Financial Statement is included in the Press Release available at: http://www.topships.org/admin/files/files/061208_Q1_08_Earnings.DOC
Source: Press Release, www.topships.org


Tsakos Energy announces time-charter extensions for two aframax tankers
---Tsakos Energy Navigation, a provider of international seaborne crude oil and petroleum product transportation services, has announced two-year time-charter extensions for two aframax product tankers to Neste Oil of Finland, the original charterers.
The charters are comprised of a minimum rate and 50-50 profit share if rates exceed that level. The charters, assuming only the minimum rate, are expected to generate gross revenues in excess of $42.5 million over the corresponding period.
The vessels are expected to commence their new employment upon expiration of the existing charters in July 2008 and October 2008. In order to conform with the company's balanced employment strategy, a third sister vessel will enter the spot market.
Nikolas Tsakos, president and CEO of Tsakos, said: "These charter extensions are a vote of confidence from a world-class client like Neste and a testament to our ability to enhance our strategic relations with our major clients for the benefit of shareholders."
Source: 13th June 2008, By Staff Writer,http://www.energy-business-review.com/article_news.asp?guid=24A3B57A-DEFC-4EC9-97FF-43ACF894EC67


"Surveyor" Summer 2008, devoted to the Greek Maritime Community
It is all about the Hellenic Maritime Community in the latest issue of "Surveyor", a Quarterly Magazine from ABS.
The Cover picture is with an ABS surveyor examines structural modifications to a bulk carrier undergoing refit in the Perama shipyard zone near Athens, Greece.
Increasing seaborne commerce in recent years has brought the maritime world great opportunities and great practical challenges. Some changes and challenges for the Hellenic maritime community are examined in this issue of Surveyor.
Features included:
Page 10: Seeking Practical, Global Solutions > UGS head Nicos Efthymiou on good regulation, practicality and awareness.
Page 20: Voice of Experience, Voice of Reason > Martecma is a technical discussion forum with a very practical goal.
Page 24: Shining a Light on Shipping > Getting merchant shipping the attention it deserves.
Page 30: A Perfect Mix > ABS Piraeus builds a diverse, talented team suited to its challenging client base.
Page 35: Teaching from Experience > ABS Maritime Services Hellas taps talent to create topical courses to address industry needs.
Page 36: Viewpoint: Helping Our Seafarers on Board > ICS Chairman Philip A. Embiricos on simplifying life at sea.
To read full stories, go to: www.eagle.org
Source: Surveyor. A Quarterly Magazine from ABS, Summer 2008, avilable at: www.eagle.org