Wednesday , 20 June 2018
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Rickmers Maritime to be wound up
Panamax class vessels are suffering in the current industry climate

Rickmers Maritime to be wound up

Container ship owner Rickmers Maritime Trust is to be wound up following the failure to reach an agreement with lenders to restructure the Trust’s debts.

According to data from VesselsValue, the trust owns 14 container vessels worth US$89m, all from the Panamax class which has suffered following the expansion of the Panama Canal.

Rickmers Trust Management Pte, the trustee-manager, is currently in advanced discussions with a potential buyer for the Trust’s assets which may allow the Trust to distribute cash recoveries upfront to unsecured creditors.

It noted that the failure to reach a restructuring deal led to the non-payment of US$196.7m to the HSH Syndicate, which was due on March 31, 2017.

There was a further failure to pay S$4.3m to noteholders in November 2016 as well as various breaches in loan covenants.

“This situation places the Trust in a situation of aggravated and unsustainable illiquidity going forward,” the trustee-manager stated in a stock filing.

HSH had granted Rickmers Trust Management Pte until April 15, 2017, to present a new restructuring proposal which would ensure a higher level of total recoveries than under a winding up of the Trust.

However, although it hoped to secure debt forgiveness from HSH for the existing loans, potential investors were dissuaded by considerable challenges in obtaining significant debt write-offs.

“It is expected that the business operations of the Trust’s vessels will remain unaffected by this process and that the Trust will continue to meet its ongoing charter party obligations to its customers,” the stock filing added.