Star Bulk Finalizes Deal to Buy Two Kamsarmaxes

Greek dry bulk shipping company Star Bulk Carriers has finalized agreements to acquire two Kamsarmax vessels for USD 30.3 million.

Each of the two bulkers has a carrying capacity of 81,713 dwt and was built at China’s Jiangsu New Yangzijiang in 2013.

Although Star Bulk did not disclose the name of the seller, it could be Japanese shipping company Nisshin Shipping as the specifications of the vessels fit the ones Star Bulk was negotiating with Nisshin.

As World Maritime News earlier reported, Star Bulk decided to buy four 81,700 dwt bulkers from Nisshin in late-February. The bulkers in question are Canon Trader II, Kapetan Trader I, Kapetan Trader 2, and Kapetan Trader 3 and they were bought for a total of USD 60.8 million.

Star Bulk said it expects to take delivery of the two ships between March and May 2017.

The company is currently in “advanced discussions” with a financial institution to secure financing for up to 50% of the acquisition costs of the vessels.

Furthermore, the company revealed it took delivery of the Newcastlemax ship Star Virgo from CSSC (Hong Kong) Shipping Company Limited. The bulker is financed under a bareboat charter accounted for as a capital lease.

Separately, the Republic of the Marshall Island (RMI) Registry informed that the United States Coast Guard (USCG) has awarded Qualship 21 status to 30 bulk carriers owned and operated by Star Bulk.

The Qualship 21 program provides rewards to high-quality ships and can only be awarded to vessels sailing under a qualifying flag.

In a letter to Star Bulk, Paul Thomas, Rear Admiral, the USCG, pointed out that “less than ten percent of all (non-US flagged) ships that operate in the (US) meet the eligibility requirements of this program.”

“Being awarded Qualship 21 status is good news not only for us, but for our charterers as well,” Nicos Rescos, Chief Operating Officer of Star Bulk, said.

“Our ships have been recognized as well-run and rewarded with limited port state control inspections in the US during their Qualship 21 certification period; fewer inspections means a lower likelihood of unnecessary delays and we’re grateful to the IRI team for all their assistance in the process,” Rescos concluded.

Star Bulk’s fleet currently includes 68 operating vessels, two newly acquired ships and four newbuildings being built at shipyards in China. Additionally, the company has one chartered-in Supramax vessel under a time charter expiring in September 2017.