Market

Semi-refrigerated / ethylene carriers

This segment includes semi-refrigerated and ethylene carriers from 8,000 cbm and up. The group had seven ships in this segment at the start of 2014, where one was sold in the fourth quarter. Of the remaining 6, 1 is on a long term TC, while the other 5 has been operating in the spot marked and on consecutive voyage contracts.

For these 5 ships 2014 was the first year outside a JV / commercial cooperation within the ethylene segment, and the group had an upturn in utilization and earnings as a result of a better market, but also as a consequence of being able to freely re-position vessels to other geographical areas, as well as having a broader customer portfolio.

The “Clipper Harald” is on a time charter (TC) until July 2019, and the charterer has an option to extend the contract for an additional eighteen months. This contract was extended by 5 years in 2013, commencing in July 2014, based on “Clipper Harald” retrofitting exhaust gas cleaning equipment (Scrubber) during the fall of 2014, enabling the vessel to comply with new emission regulations from January 2015. .   

LGC

This segment is defined as fully refrigerated LPG ships from 59.000 – 60.000 cbm. The fleet consist of 9 ships, where 3 are under construction for delivery in second and third quarter 2015. All ships operate on TC with varying length.  

The newbuilds represent a new type of LGC, with a shorter hull to avoid waiting time in certain areas, and there is considerable amount of development done in order to create the most energy efficient vessels possible. Changes including hull shape, propulsion technology, antifouling technology and cargo systems. Furthermore, the newbuilds are the first LGC LPG carriers in the world with fully integrated exhaust gas cleaning system for both the main and auxiliary engines. This means that the ships comply with all existing environmental standards in Emission Control Areas (ECA) from 2015, and the new expected global standards in 2020.

The average earnings on TC basis showed a continuous positive trend with improvements from 2013, where earnings for 2014 was about 2% higher compared to 2013. The positive trend in earnings continues in 2015, where LGC segment are benefiting from positive outlook in LPG, and from favourable changes in trading patterns for Ammonia.

VLGC

This segment is defined as fully refrigerated LPG ships of 75.000 – 84.000 cbm. Solvang has a total of 5 ships in this segment, two Panamax VLGC ships of 75,000 cbm, one VLGC of 82.000 cbm, and two VLGC ships of 84.000 cbm.

The Panamax VLGC’s are purpose built for transporting LPG from the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico to the west coast of Central America. As a result of these features, the Panamax VLGC’s have achieved better TC earnings than the VLGC fleet in general in 2014. The “Clipper Victory” is on TC to August 2016, while the “Clipper Sirius” is on TC to January 2017.

The 82,000 cbm VLGC “Clipper Sun” is on a TC until September 2016. “Clipper Quito” a 84.000 cbm vessel, is on TC to October 2016, and the “Clipper Posh”, a 84.000 cbm vessel, is on TC to December 2018.  

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