Oslo-based AMSC and Maritime Partners have signed a share purchase agreement for Maritime Partners’ purchase of American Tanker Holding Company (ATHC), a subsidiary of AMSC, for an enterprise value of $746.7 million.
ATHC, through its subsidiaries, owns nine handysize products tankers and one handysize shuttle tanker operated in the U.S. Jones Act market. All are on long-term bareboat charter to Overseas Shipholding Group Inc. (NYSE:OSG) or Keystone Shipping Co.
The deal is expected to close by October 31, 2023, subject to customary conditions and approval by AMSC shareholders. AMSC will receive gross cash proceeds of $249.3 million from the sale.
Privately-held Maritime Partners, LLC was founded in 2015 and is a leading provider of maritime financing solutions for vessels used in the Jones Act trade, with a managed fleet of around 1,800 vessels comprising pushboats, towboats, and a variety of barges available for lease. The company offers tailored leasing services to operators across all credit quality levels and transports commodities that are essential to the US domestic economy, including agricultural products, chemicals, aggregates, and refined petroleum products.
The deal is believed to mark Maritime Partners’ entry into the oceangoing Jones Act market.
“We are thrilled to acquire AMSC’s Jones Act business which is a natural fit for our platform and consistent with our investment strategy,” said Bick Brooks, the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Maritime Partners, LLC. “The acquired vessels are critical long-lived assets engaged in the transportation of non-discretionary cargo throughout the United States. The vessels are employed on long-term bareboat charters with two strong counterparties. This acquisition will nicely complement our existing lease portfolio by diversifying lessee exposure, asset exposure and end market exposure within the protected Jones Act markets. As we look to the future, we are excited about cultivating a lasting and growing partnership with our two new lessees, Overseas Shipholding Group and Keystone.”
AMSC is a ship owning company with a fleet of modern handy size product tankers and a subsea construction vessel on bareboat charters. Following the completion of the transaction, the only remaining vessel will be the subsea construction vessel Normand Maximus, chartered to a subsidiary of Solstad Offshore ASA.
“We believe this is the ideal new owner of this business for the next phase in the lifecycle of these assets,” said Pål Lothe Magnussen, CEO of AMSC. “AMSC’s ownership tenure has surpassed 18 years since the ships were ordered, during which significant financial profits have been created and provided to AMSC and its shareholders. We believe that the long remaining commercial life of the fleet in combination with strong bareboat charter contract cover in a strong market represents a good opportunity and point in time for us to reconsider capital allocation for AMSC and strategy going forward, and this transaction is a natural step in this process.”
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