Sovcomflot Buys Nine PRISCO Tankers
Russia’s PAO Sovcomflot (SCF Group) subsidiary SCF Tankers Ltd. has won an auction for nine arctic-going tankers that belonged Primorsk International Shipping Ltd. (PRISCO), who filed for chapter 11 protection in January 2016.
The purchase deal is worth $215 million, and the auction results have been approved by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, which is handling PRISCO’s bankruptcy case. SCF Tankers outbid Denmark’s Hafnia Tankers Ltd., who submitted a $208 million offer, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The nine ships comprise one Aframax crude oil tanker: Zaliv Amerika (104,535-dwt); three LR2 oil product tankers: Zaliv Amurskiy (104,542-dwt), Zaliv Baikal (104,532-dwt), Zaliv Vostok (104,527-dwt); and five MR oil product tankers: PRISCO Alexandra (50,973-dwt), PRISCO Ekaterina (50,956-dwt), PRISCO Elena (50,000-dwt), PRISCO Elizaveta (50,000-dwt), PRISCO Irina (50,923-dwt).
All the vessels are seven to eight years old and of Ice Class 1А or 1С, which enables their year-round use for oil products and crude shipments from the seasonally frozen ports of the Baltic Sea, the Sea of Okhotsk and the White Sea. Their type and size make them suitable for most Russian port terminals.
Evgeny Ambrosov, Senior Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer of PAO Sovcomflot, said, “SCF Group has reached a good deal by purchasing these modern ships at below their market price. This should enable SCF Group to strengthen its position in the maritime transportation of refined petroleum products globally, and also better positioned when considering the export growth potential for this commodity group through Russian ports on the Baltic Sea and in the Far East.”
Sovcomflot Group already has experience operating of PRISCO vessels, having purchased six ice-class Aframax shuttle tankers from PRISCO in 2010. Today all these vessels are serving the Sakhalin-1 and Sakhalin-2 projects under long-term contracts with the project operators – all six manned with Russian crews. Technical management for these vessels is provided by Sovcomflot subsidiary SCF Management Services (Sakhalin).