General Maritime Corporation (NYSE: GMR) announced today that it has completed the sale of the Genmar Princess, a 1991-built Aframax tanker, to an unaffiliated third party, generating net proceeds of $7.5 million. The Company also announced it has entered into an agreement to sell the Genmar Gulf, a 1991-built Suezmax tanker, in a separate transaction with another unaffiliated third party. The sale of the Genmar Gulf is expected to generate net proceeds of $11.0 million and close by February 28, 2011. The Company intends to use net proceeds from the sale of both vessels, which are expected to total approximately $18.5 million, to pay down debt under the Company’s $750 million revolving credit facility.
The Company also announced it has completed the previously announced sale of the last of three product tankers, the 2005-built Stena Concept, to affiliates of Northern Shipping Fund Management Bermuda, Ltd., generating net proceeds of $21.0 million. General Maritime received total net proceeds of $61.7 million from the sale and leaseback of all three product tankers, the Stena Concept, the Stena Contest and the Genmar Concord, a portion of which was used to repay the Company’s $22.8 million bridge loan, plus $0.1 million in fees and accrued and unpaid interest, on February 8, 2011. As a result of the repayment of the bridge loan, the Genmar Vision, a 2001-built VLCC, was released from its mortgage.
In connection with the sale of the Stena Concept, the vessel has been leased back to General Maritime under a previously announced bareboat charter entered into with the purchasers for a period of seven years at a rate of $6,500 per day for the first two years of the charter period and $10,000 per day for the remainder of the charter period. The Stena Concept will continue to be employed on a time charter as previously disclosed by General Maritime at an adjusted rate of $15,000 per day until July 4, 2011. General Maritime has options to repurchase the three product tankers at previously announced prices.
John P. Tavlarios, President of General Maritime Corporation, commented, “With the sale of the Genmar Princess and the agreement to sell the Genmar Gulf, we have taken proactive measures to enhance the age profile of our fleet and improve our liquidity position. We are also pleased to complete the sale and leaseback of the three product tankers and repay our bridge loan, as planned.”