Product tanker specialist Hafnia is the latest Oslo-listed shipowner to announce plans to seek a secondary listing in the US.
The Mikael Skov-led company’s move follows similar plans by fellow BW Group company BW LPG and Greek tanker owner Okeanis Eco Tankers.
“Our goal is for Hafnia to reach out to a wider shareholder base, access the world’s largest capital market and improve the share liquidity for all our shareholders,” he said in a statement.
The shipowner has yet to file a registration statement on Form F-1 with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, according to a search by TradeWinds.
If the listing proceeds, it will follow the well-trodden path of several shipowners from the Oslo Bors to New York’s equity markets.
The most recent examples of this have been Idan Ofer’s LNG shipowning company Cool Company and newcastlemax pure-play Himalaya Shipping.
If Hafnia does list in New York, it will join the likes of fellow product tanker heavyweight Scorpio Tankers and former takeover target Ardmore Shipping Corp.
News of Hafnia’s US listing plans came as the company reported a near 50% decline in third-quarter net profit to $146.9m against the $280.2m seen 12 months earlier.
Time charter equivalent earnings for Hafnia were $310.3m in the third quarter, resulting in an average TCE of $28,954 per day.
“The product tanker market experienced a slight slowdown after a strong second quarter, as seasonal effects began to reappear,” Hafnia said of its third-quarter performance.
“However, we continued to deliver robust and steady earnings across all vessel segments. The market is now mainly driven by fundamental factors and seasonal influences, as market inefficiencies have gradually diminished.”
Hafnia said the market outlook remains “very positive” in the winter season, which has historically demonstrated strength.
“Inventories in the Western Hemisphere have continually declined throughout the year, indicating a potential rise in imports from Middle/Far Eastern destinations,” it said.
“This is expected to improve vessel demand and contribute to improved overall earnings.
“Whilst geopolitical concerns persist, particularly in Israel and the Middle East, the impact on the product tanker market is currently limited,” Hafnia added.
As of 8 November 2023, Hafnia said it had secured coverage for 65% of earning days in the fourth quarter at an average rate of $29,893 per day, with an additional 13% coverage at $23,842 per day for the year 2024.
Fearnley Securities called the profit numbers solid and ahead of estimates, due to higher than expected rates and lower costs.
The investment bank also said previous moves by owners to add a US listing have been helpful for liquidity and pricing.
On forward bookings, analysts Oystein Vaagen and Fredrik Dybwad said the company is delivering strongly compared to peers.
Fearnley is estimating $0.31 earnings per share for the fourth quarter.