Methanol-fueled ship pioneer Marinvest has a new owner

Clean Sea Transport, a joint venture between MSEA Group, Arkview Capital, and Scorpio Tankers, has acquired 100% of the shares in Swedish shipping company Marinvest AB to promote clean fuels in the shipping sector.

The deal entails Marinvest’s managed fleet of five dual-fuel methanol carriers and four LR1 ice class 1A product tankers.

Courtesy of Clean Sea Transport

The methanol-powered ships are deployed on long-term charters of up to 15 years to a joint venture partner, Waterfront Shipping Limited, a subsidiary of Methanex Corporation, the world’s largest producer of methanol.

Based in Gothenburg, Marinvest is a shipping company founded in 1988 by the late Lars Mossberg, an innovator in the shipping sector who developed and managed one of the world’s first methanol-powered commercial vessels. Mossberg validated methanol as a clean, safe, and future-proof marine fuel capable of meeting the industry’s increasingly stringent emissions standards.

“We are very excited about the acquisition of Marinvest, the world’s pioneer in building and operating eco-friendly methanol-fueled vessels,” Modi Mano, Founder & CEO of MSEA Group, commented.

“We believe that methanol, which reduces emissions by up to 95%, is a marine fuel for the future as evidenced by the increasing number of orders placed for methanol dual-fuel vessels.”

“Together with the Marinvest team, we intend to be at the forefront of the shipping industry’s transition to clean fuels. Our platform will offer charterers and customers access to future-proof tonnage in the tanker, container, and dry bulk segments. The inclusion of four LR1 product tankers in the fleet underpins our counter cyclical tanker investment strategy,” Mano added.

“Our investment in Marinvest will promote the use of clean fuels to significantly reduce the emissions footprint of the shipping industry and key customers. With only a fraction of the ocean-going fleet using clean fuels today, we believe there is a great opportunity for growth to meet the industry’s goal of significantly reducing emissions by 2050,” Pavel Chernyshov, Co-founder of Arkview Capital, said.

“Since we took delivery of our first two dual-fuel methanol ships in 2016, we have expanded the fleet to a total of five vessels… The sale to Clean Sea Transport will ensure sufficient capital backing to grow our methanol-fueled fleet,” Patrik Mossberg, CEO of Marinvest, noted.

“In partnership with Marinvest, we have been successfully operating methanol dual-fuel vessels for five years now demonstrating methanol as a viable, low-emissions alternative marine fuel for the shipping industry,” Paul Hexter, President of Waterfront Shipping, said.

“As society transitions to a low-carbon economy, we look forward to collaborating with Clean Sea Transport to continue to prioritize innovation in methanol marine fuel vessels for our growing fleet.”

Mari Innovator joins Marinvest’s managed fleet

The business acquisition coincided with the delivery of the fifth methanol dual-fuel tanker to join Marinvest’s fleet under management.

The 49,999 dwt methanol-fueled newbuild was handed over to Waterfront Shipping Company by South Korean shipyard Hyundai Mipo Dockyard.

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The contract for eight new methanol dual-fuel vessels is being carried out in partnership with Marinvest, Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK Line), Meiji Shipping Co., (Meiji Shipping), KSS Line and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL).

As explained, it is the first ship to be IMO Tier III compliant, harnessing a methanol-and-water blending/diesel in water emulsion system in its main engine. This new system brings significant cost savings compared to a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) emissions control system or an exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) NOx emissions control system.

Mari Innovator also boasts several energy-saving design features. These include a propeller boss cap fin to enhance propeller efficiency, speed/fuel pilot which keeps the consumption to an optimum level and frequency-controlled pumps and fans.

It is also fitted with a power factor compensator for its alternators which brings the ship’s power factor to 0.96 (compared with the average 0.84 for most ships), enabling it to save 11% more energy. Finally, with its vessel incinerator capable of evaporating bilge water instead of pumping it out to sea, Mari Innovator will also be playing its part to protect the marine environment.