Japan’s Iino Kaiun has banked a huge profit from offloading an elderly VLCC in hot sale-and-purchase markets.

The company said the 301,000-dwt Koho I (built 2002) has gone to an unnamed buyer for a gain of JPY 2.9bn ($21.3m).

This is an estimated amount after deducting costs related to the deal.

Iino is not revealing the sale price or book value due to confidentiality clauses, but brokers said the vessel went for $28.5m, in line with VesselsValue’s assessment for further trading.

The veteran tanker is worth $25.7m on a scrap basis.

A special survey is due on the ship.

The Koho I cost a reported $80m to order in 2000, according to UK shipbroker Clarksons.

The tanker was loading a cargo on Wednesday at the Ras Tanura terminal in Saudi Arabia.

Iino said the profit would be booked in the year ending 31 March 2023.

Summer delivery

The Koho I will be handed over between mid-July and late August.

It is being sold to “effectively utilise management resources and improve asset efficiency”, Iino said.

The owner has a mixed fleet of 55 tankers, bulkers and LPG carriers.

The sale leaves it with three big crude vessels built in 2006, 2020 and 2021.

Earlier this week, shipbroker Affinity (Shipping) said sales of secondhand VLCCs hit their highest monthly level in at least three years during May.

Despite global fears over the cost of living, falling equity values and the war in Ukraine, 17 VLCCs changed hands last month.

“Although secondhand prices continued to rise, there was significant interest in the larger-sized tankers last month,” Affinity said.

“There were also nine aframax sales, the most since April 2021, as owners sought to position themselves for the crude oil tanker market recovery before prices rise too high.”