Grindrod Shipping has agreed to sell another of its older bulkers against a background of rising freight rates.

The US-listed, Singapore-based owner said a deal has been struck for the 28,200-dwt IVS Ibis (built 2012) at $11.7m.

The buyer has not been disclosed, but delivery is planned for around 21 March.

VesselsValue assesses the handysize as worth $12.5m.

In 2018, Grindrod paid $10.4m for the remaining 49% of the ship it did not already own after the mutual dissolution of a joint venture.

The owner will be left with 17 other ships.

So far in the first quarter, time charter equivalent earnings for the handysizes have averaged $11,875 per day, with supramaxes/ultramaxes on $14,795.

In the second half of 2023, the smaller ships managed $10,182 and the larger classes $13,849 per day.

Grindrod is owned by London-listed Taylor Maritime Investments following a takeover in December 2022.

Ed Buttery, who is CEO of both companies, said the priority after the deal is deleveraging to strengthen the balance sheet.

“I am pleased with the progress the company made despite challenging market conditions,” he added.

Market signs encouraging

“We’re encouraged by the positive market momentum.”

The net loss for the second six months was $10.9m, against a profit of $18m a year before.

The owner took an $81m hit on selling vessels: three handysizes and two ultramax/supramax units.

Revenue was swelled by these sales, however, reaching $201m from $189m in 2022.

In January, Grindrod said it had agreed to sell the 32,600-dwt IVS Kingbird (built 2007) for $10.4m, which it said was “effectively a 1.5% premium to carrying value”.

It also confirmed that it had exercised a purchase option on the 60,300-dwt IVS Naruo (built 2014) for around $12m for delivery in the summer.