Largest Russian Shipping Firm ‘Sovcomflot’ Sells Off At Least 20 Tankers To Clear Debts
The largest shipping firm in Russia, Sovcomflot, has sold off at least 20 tankers to avoid defaults and pay off creditors. About it on May 23, reports the Financial Times.
It has been observed that the firm has sold one-sixth of its fleet. Debt defaults coupled with negative loans on their balance sheets may severely impact Sovcomflot’s reputation among creditors and oil majors, including Total and Shell, which lease its vessels.
Simultaneously, the person who bought four LNG tankers that were sold by the ING, was the firm Eastern Pacific Shipping of Idan Ofer, the Israel-based billionaire.
Four additional vessels, per the newspaper, are controlled by firms founded by Evangelos Marinakis, the Greek tycoon and owner of Nottingham Forest and Olympiacos.
ING has taken over the ownership of part of Sovcomflot’s vessels, so that potential buyers can directly discuss with the bank, instead of a firm, which has earlier come under sanctions from the EU, Britain, Australia, and the US.
Despite the short sale period, the price of four gas carriers was almost that of the market value – $ 700 million, while the vessels were leased by the British Shell – the original charterer.
Per several news sources, 40 vessels had been put up for sale. Besides, many new agreements are also expected in the future.
Toward the end of February, the list of the fleet of own and chartered vessels of Sovcomflot numbered 134 vessels with a deadweight of more than 11.7 million tons. The list also included 108 tankers of different classes, 11 specialized vessels, and 14 gas carriers.