NIBC sells $1B shipping portfolio to Hamburg Commercial Bank

Dutch commercial bank NIBC has reached an agreement to sell its shipping portfolio of senior secured loans of $992 million to Germany’s Hamburg Commercial Bank (HCOB).

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As informed, the divestment enables a sharper focus on NIBC’s key business segments where growth can be accelerated.

NIBC has been providing a range of financial services to the maritime industry. The bank requires vessels to use low-sulphur fuel, scrubbers and/or other best available technologies to manage and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.

It is also one of eleven leading ship financiers which have committed to the Responsible Ship Recycling Standards (RSRS). The RSRS initiative aims to promote responsible practices in the shipping value chain by embedding RSRS into internal ESG policies procedures and standards for the financing of shipping assets.

With its long-standing presence in the shipping industry, HCOB is said to be ‘well-positioned’ to accommodate a further growth of the business, demonstrating ‘a great fit’ for the client base, the portfolio, and the team.

As part of the agreement, a team of NIBC’s ship finance professionals will transfer over to HCOB. What is more, a new Dutch representative office will be established.

“We are proud of the strong and successful shipping franchise we have built over the years, with a well-performing portfolio and a team of outstanding professionals. We believe we have found a great new owner in HCOB, who is committed to investing in the continued growth ambitions of the franchise,” Saskia Hovers, member of the Executive Committee, said.

“As part of our regular strategic review, we have decided to divest the shipping portfolio. By increasing our focus, we will be even better equipped to deliver sustained long-term growth and further invest in mortgages, savings, real estate and infrastructure.”

Law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised NIBC on an agreement to sell its portfolio of shipping loans and related derivatives to HCOB.

Economic completion of the deal – which was carried out through a multi-phase, competitive auction process – took place on June 27, 2024, though full legal transfer of the loan book will continue throughout the rest of 2024.