The world’s largest charter owner and manager of container ships keeps getting larger.
Vancouver-based Seaspan Corp. has agreed to buy a fleet of six container ships for $380 million US in cash. The deal, which will be financed via borrowings and cash on hand, is expected to close in December.
The acquisition will increase Seaspan’s container cargo fleet to 119 ships. Its capacity will be one million 20-foot-equivalent units (TEUs) and give it a 7.7% share of a global container cargo fleet that shipping data company Alphaliner estimates now has a capacity exceeding 23 million TEUs.
Bing Chen, Seaspan president and CEO, called the deal a “win-win outcome for one of our key financing partners, a key customer and for Seaspan … and [will] further cement Seaspan’s position as the leading global independent charter owner and operator of container ships.”
Seaspan’s fleet has grown consistently from the 10 ships it had at its initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange in August 2005.
Its customers include Hapag-Lloyd, Maersk, Yang Ming and other top international container shipping lines.
Chen revealed the six-ship purchase during Seaspan’s third-quarter earnings conference call when he noted that the company had closed a $500-million US “accordion to our portfolio financing program, increasing the financing to $1.5 billion.”
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