Star Bulk (NASDAQ:SBLK), an Athens-based dry bulk shipping firm has announced that as of last week, they have entered into agreements to build five new bulk carriers for a total consideration of approximately $214.9 million.
Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding will build a pair of 208,000 dwt Newcastlemax dry bulk carriers, and Nantong COSCO KHI Ship Engineering Co. will build two 61,000 dwt Ultramaxes and one 209,000 dwt Newcastlemax bulk carrier
The Ultramaxes will be delivered in Q4 2015 and the three Newcastlemaxes will be delivered in 1H 2016.
“We anticipate demand for dry bulk commodities from most developing countries to continue to grow and the freight market to start showing signs of improvement due to the lower orderbook, slow steaming and the scarcity of bank financing,” commented Star Bulk CEO Spyros Capralos in his company’s 2nd quarter earnings report.
In early July, Star Bulk signed contracts with Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding for two 180,000 dwt ecoâ€type, fuel efficient Capesize drybulk vessels for a total consideration of of $96.0 million. Additionally letters of intent were signed “with a major Japanese shipyard” for the construction of two 60,000 DWT ecoâ€type, fuel efficient Ultramax drybulk vessels at a price of approximately $55.0 million.
Star Bulk also announced their Capesize bulker Star Borealis, has signed a five to seven month charter at a gross daily time charter rate of USD$27,000.
Currently, Star Bulk has an operating fleet of thirteen dry bulk carriers. The total fleet consists of five Capesize and eight Supramax dry bulk vessels with a combined cargo carrying capacity of 1,290,602 deadweight tons.