Ship management has a new superpower. Private equity-backed OSM Maritime is to merge with Singapore’s Thome Ship Management to create a fleet of more than 1,000 ships under third-party management. Singapore-based Thome Group proved a more than a willing partner for the private equity-backed company’s growth ambitions. Their shared Norwegian heritage is likely to help smooth integration as the outfit looks to size to for an advantage over the competition.
Next up, international bank HSBC has been steadily lowering its exposure to Greek shipping, according to several shipping and ship finance players in Athens. Despite selling sell its entire Greek branch network and the retail and corporate business last year, the bank had kept its shipping business but is now understood to be selling off its loan book piecemeal.
Meanwhile, the fallout from the collapse of the Frontline-Euronav merger continued this week. Euronav filed an application for emergency arbitration to halt what it called Frontline’s “unilateral” decision to tear up the combination agreement from last July.
Earlier in the week it emerged that the Saverys family wants to replace the entire Euronav supervisory board. The family’s shipping company CMB has asked for a special general meeting of shareholders as soon as possible.
John Fredriksen however appeared to be going nowhere. The magnate surprised the market by increasing not cutting his stake in the Belgian tanker company purchasing $74m in stock.
The hunt for ice-class oil carriers after sanctions against Russia may have produced yet another benchmark deal. Major Greek shipowner Thenamaris has been linked to the sale of a 16-year-old tanker for a reported $47m, which would be a record for that type of vessel.
Gunnar Eliassen has resigned as a director of John Fredriksen’s Seatankers Management after seven years as a close advisor to the shipping tycoon. Eliassen joined the private shipowning and investment arm of the Fredriksen empire in 2016. Reports suggest he will retain some other Fredriksen company board positions, for now.
TradeWinds’ environment newsletter Green Seas talked to a scientist about findings that will inform discussions about the impact of scrubbers on the sea. Maria Granberg, a senior researcher at IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute, told TradeWinds’ Eric Martin that researchers studying scrubber discharges had found negative impacts at concentrations as low as 0.001%.
In our weekly shipping finance newsletter, Streetwise, TradeWinds’ Joe Brady looked at why investing is getting ‘sticky’ at the bottom of a dry bulk trough.
And finally, Hoegh Autoliners expects it will build its next round of four large dual-fuel ships as diesel-ammonia burners, and skip LNG entirely as a fuel source. The development comes after engine maker MAN Energy Solutions said it can deliver large ammonia-burning marine engines by the fourth quarter of 2024.
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