Photo: Illustration. Image by Euronav

Euronav inks sale and leaseback for VLCC

Belgium’s tanker shipping company Euronav has entered into a sale and leaseback agreement with China’s investment management company Taiping & Sinopec Financial Leasing Ltd Co. for Newton, a 2009-built very large crude carrier (VLCC).

As informed, the 307,284 dwt vessel, previously known as Maersk Newton, was sold for $36 million and delivered to its new owner on 22 February 2021.

Euronav has leased back the vessel under a 36-month bareboat contract at an average rate of $22,500 per day. At the end of the bareboat contract, the vessel will be redelivered to its owners.

The transaction produced a capital gain of about $2.4 million. After repayment of the existing debt, the transaction generated $19 million free cash, according to Euronav.

“By securing an excellent price for this vessel, we maintain the capability to purchase younger tonnage, using the generated revenues. This is consistent with our approach on fleet renewal,” Hugo De Stoop, Euronav CEO, commented.

As part of its fleet renewal strategy, in early February 2021, Euronav also announced a deal to buy two eco-Suexmax newbuilds through a resale. The ships will be fitted with scrubbers, ballast water treatment systems, and have the structural notation to be LNG Ready and potentially Ammonia Ready.

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Euronav’s owned and operated fleet comprises two V-Plus vessels, 45 VLCCs (two to be delivered), 26 Suezmaxes (one of which is in a joint venture and two vessels time chartered in) and two FSO vessels (both owned in 50%-50% joint venture).