TOP Ships Inc., an international owner and operator of modern, fuel-efficient "ECO" tanker vessels currently focusing on the transportation of petroleum products, announced today that it entered into a sale and leaseback agreement and a 5 year time charter with Cargill International SA (Cargill Ocean Transportation) on June 29, 2018, a leading vessel operator and freight-trading business in the bulk shipping sector, for its newbuilding vessel Hull No 8242 currently under construction at Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co., South Korea.

TOP Ships Inc. Announces Financing for Newbuilding Vessel and Five Year Time Charter With Cargill International SA

Consummation of the deal is expected to take place on the vessel’s delivery date currently planned for January 2019. Following the sale, the Company will bareboat charter back the vessel and immediately put it on a 5 year time charter with Cargill Ocean Transportation. As part of this transaction, the company has continuous options to buy back the vessel during the whole five-year sale and leaseback period at the end of which it has to buy it back.

The gross proceeds from the sale amount is $32.4 million, which is the total amount that remains to be paid for the specific vessel.

The revenue backlog expected to be generated by the time charter fixture is about $27.6 million.

Evangelos Pistiolis, the President, Chief Executive Officer and Director of the Company, said: “Our strategy of acquiring very high-quality vessels has once again been embraced by a top quality charterer.

This financing alone covers about one-fifth of the capital required in order to take delivery of the three vessels that we acquired during the first quarter of 2018, all of which will be delivered within the first 2 quarters of 2019.

We are working very hard to finalize financing for the remaining capital requirements of these vessels in the near future.

As a result of the time charter employment the total gross revenue backlog for the fixed charter period of our fleet has grown even further to $211 million.

 Year  Days fixed
 2018  100%
 2019   86 %
 2020   85 %
 2021   44 %
 2022   12 %
 2023     7 %
 2024     2 %

The above charter coverage percentages are calculated as the ratio of number of days vessels are expected to be hired pursuant to the fixed period of existing time charters divided by number of days vessels are available for chartering during the respective calendar years assuming no off-hire days.”

Source: TOP Ships