Gibson: Major VLCC Players Active in Newbuilding Market
The 2014 had been a much more rewarding year for owners than 2013 with positive spikes seen in the spot market and a definite shift in sentiment, with reasonable expectations for the second half of the year, according to the UK shipbroker Gibson.
Based on Gibson’s latest Weekly Tanker Report, some 31 VLCCs have been ordered this year and the vast majority by well-known players, with the Chinese ordering only 1 vessel directly.
With a total of 6 vessels on order at Hyundai, added to their recently acquired Samco tonnage of 7 vessels, DHT Holdings Inc. will have a VLCC fleet of 20 units.
Capital Ship Management have ordered 2 taking their fleet to 6, Eastmed 2 which will take their fleet to 8 and Maran Tankers 4 increasing their portfolio to 28, part of a wider fleet renewal programme.
Metrostar orders total in 6, having booked a further 2 newbuildings, while Genmar have added 2 newbuildings in addition to a single order placed last year, taking their total to 10. Navig8 have ordered 6 newbuildings adding to their previously ordered 8, which will take their total number of new ships to 14 (+3 pool units) eventually taking their VLCC fleet to 17.
According to Gibson’s Private Equity report, Wilbur Ross’s Transportation Recovery Fund have teamed up with Anders Wilhelmsen and have 2 ships each.
“It is interesting to see how many experienced VLCC operators have chosen to make a move this year and it is worth noting that prices recently firmed to around $98 million, compared to a low point in the first half of 2013 at around $90 million.
Whilst this is a review about newbuilding orders, it would be a miss not to mention the fleet expansion of Euronav by some 19 second-hand VLCCs over the course of 2014. With just 6% of the current VLCC fleet over 15 years of age, it appears that there is limited scope for some fleet replacement with modern eco units being the order of the day,” Gibson’s Weekly Tanker Report reads.
Around 28 VLCCs deliveries are scheduled for this year, which then drop to 8 in 2015 before picking up in 2016 to 48.
“Provided the Chinese keep their hands in their pockets this would seem to be a containable level of replacement in this sector which may not be so true in others,” Gibson added.