Okeanis Reinvents Fleet Financing

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Updated Published

The maritime firm Okeanis Eco Tankers, based in Greece, has successfully carried out a number of refinancing operations for its fleet, aiming to enhance its financial framework.

This enterprise, listed on both the New York and Oslo stock exchanges and operated by the Alafouzos family, manages an impressive collection of six suezmaxes and eight VLCCs (Very Large Crude Carriers). It has finalized a deal for a new loan amounting to $34.7 million with a banking consortium led by Kexim Asia. This financing is designated for the acquisition of the suezmax vessel Milos, constructed in 2016, previously under a lease with Ocean Yield. The six-year financing arrangement includes a significant final payment of $17.3 million upon its conclusion, with expectations to finalize the agreement in February.

In addition to this, Okeanis Eco Tankers has entered into a sale and leaseback deal with CMB Financial Leasing concerning the VLCC named Nissos Anafi, built in 2020, and has renegotiated its existing lease agreements with the same Chinese leasing company for two other vessels, the Nissos Kea and Nissos Nikouria, both introduced in 2022.

The newly arranged sale and leaseback transaction is anticipated to generate approximately $73.5 million in funding. This capital will be allocated, in part, to refinance existing debts associated with the vessel. The lease agreement spans seven years and offers options to purchase the vessel starting after the first year.

Furthermore, the adjustments made to the leasing terms for the two VLCCs, which are set to take effect in the first quarter, will result in lower charter hire costs, extended lease terms, and the removal of early repayment charges should the purchase options be exercised.

Iraklis Sbarounis, the Chief Financial Officer of Okeanis Eco Tanker, stated the company’s intention to leverage the success of these recent financial activities to secure advantageous financing options. This strategic financial planning aims at facilitating the repurchase of another suezmax from its legacy fleet, the Poliegos in June 2024. This move is part of a border strategy encompassing a series of four transactions intended to bolster the company’s market standing further.