When it reported financial results at the end of 2021, tanker owner Tsakos Energy Navigation (TEN) said it was facing the worst market in the three decades it has been in business.
Just 15 months later, the picture has changed completely with the Greek company announcing its best-ever earnings, coinciding with its 20th anniversary as an entity listed in New York.
The Tsakos family-controlled owner of more than 60 tankers and a few LNG carriers reported net income of $101.1m for the three final months of 2022 and of $204m for the full year.
That compares with net losses of $102m and $151m for the corresponding periods of 2021 — those results, however, had been distorted by an impairment charge of $86m on seven of the company’s older tankers.
The current bonanza has some legs to go, according to the company.
“The strength of the current oil market, enhanced by geopolitical events and additional tonne-miles, seems to be on solid foundations going forward,” it said in a comment accompanying the results.
In reflection of that view, TEN announced a $0.60 dividend per share for the full year going forward — half payable in June and the rest in December.
TEN has paid dividends uninterruptedly since its NYSE listing and has amassed $2.3bn in net income and more than $500m in dividend payments.
Good times help TEN renew its fleet
The company confirmed on Thursday previous TradeWinds reports about the sale of eight handysize and MR product tankers with an average age of 17 years to unidentified third-party interests.
These sales alone will generate $80.4m in capital gains that will be booked in the results of the ongoing, first quarter of 2023.
According to the S&P Global Market database, four of these ships have emerged under the management of a United Arab Emirates-based newcomer called Radiating World Shipping.
Together with the repurchase of two older suezmax tankers previously under sale-and-leaseback agreements, TEN described this activity as “the most active sales-and-purchase period” since its inception 30 years ago.
On the other side of the ledger, TEN is awaiting delivery of eight newbuildings between the third quarter of 2023 and 2025 — a quartet of dual-fuel LNG aframaxes, a pair of dynamic positioning two shuttle tankers and two suezmaxes — all currently under construction in South Korea.
As orderbooks remain low, TEN said it expects tankers to be the main beneficiary from a post-Covid bounceback of oil imports in China.
Good news is pouring in from the LNG side of the business as well.
Earlier this month, the company concluded a chartering deal for a minimum of 12 years for its 174,000-cbm Maria Energy (built 2016) with a “leading Asian natural gas operator at a rate reflective of current market conditions in the LNG sector”.
The deal will begin upon completion of the ship’s existing contract in April 2026 and is expected to generate a minimum of $350m in gross revenue.