Hoegh LNG has refinanced two of the floating storage and regasification units chartered to the German government.
The Norwegian shipowner said on Wednesday in its first-quarter earnings report that it had taken out a 10-year, $685m loan against the 170,000-cbm Hoegh Esperanza and Hoegh Gannet (both built 2018).
The deal, for which counterparties were not disclosed, is divided into two tranches, one for each ship, and will be used to pay down their existing debt and for general corporate purposes.
Hoegh LNG said the Hoegh Esperanza tranche was drawn in February and the Hoegh Gannet tranche will be completed once it is commissioned for regasification operations in Germany.
A NOK 1.5bn ($13.7m) bond due on 1 August will be repaid using funds from the Hoegh Gannet refinancing plus debt financing of the 160,000-cbm LNG carrier Hoegh Gandria (ex-Golar Seal, built 2013), purchased from CoolCo in a deal completed in March.
Germany has the Hoegh Esperanza and the Hoegh Gannet on charter until 2032 as it looks to cut out Russian gas.
A third FSRU, the 145,130-cbm Neptune (built 2009), is chartered to TotalEnergies and is in Deutsche ReGas’ employ in Lubmin until 2029 at least.
The Hoegh Esperanza has been operating at Wilhelmshaven since December. The Hoegh Gannet arrived in Brunsbuttel in January and is undergoing commissioning work.
For the first three months of 2023, Hoegh LNG reported a $34m profit, up considerably from the $2m profit a year earlier.
It brought in $137.4m, up from $92m for the same period last year.
Hoegh LNG also trumpeted its strongest quarterly Ebitda ever, with the figure rising to $91.9m from $54.4m year over year.
It said its long-term focus is on its FSRU projects in Germany, France, Brazil and Australia.
TotalEnergies has taken the 145,000-cbm Cape Ann (built 2010) on charter through at least 2030 for domestic operations, while the 170,000-cbm FSRU Hoegh Galleon (built 2019) is set to begin work for AIE in Australia. Both will begin work later this year.
In Brazil, TSRP/Compass will employ the 170,000-cbm Hoegh Giant (built 2017) beginning in the third quarter.
Hoegh LNG said Ebitda in the second quarter will be lower, given the idle time on the Hoegh Giant contract.
“The demand for FSRUs is expected to remain strong,” it said.
“While Hoegh LNG has secured long-term contracts for its entire fleet of FSRUs, the business development team is in active dialogue with several potential new projects looking for FSRU capacity.”