Third quarter 2016 results
Belships operating income in 3rd quarter 2016 was USD 6.4 million (Q2 2016: USD 6.4 million), while EBITDA amounted to USD 2.6 million (USD 3.0 million). The Group's operating result amounted to USD 1.5 million (USD 2.1 million), while total comprehensive income for 3rd quarter 2016 was USD 0.3 million (USD 0.4 million). The decrease in operating result is mainly related to ship operating expenses, which are slightly above budget.
Impairment tests of the company's assets were performed in accordance with IAS 36. Based on an assessment of broker values and long-term charters, no impairment has been recorded in 3rd quarter.
M/S Belstar, M/S Belnor and M/S Belisland have continued the long-term contracts to Canpotex of Canada. Canpotex is one of the world's largest exporters of potash, a fertilizer product imported in large volumes by countries such as China, India and Brazil. M/S Belocean and M/S Belforest are both still on time charter to Cargill. The first open position will be for M/S Belocean around April 2017.
All ships have sailed without significant off-hire. Technical management is handled by Belships Management (Singapore), with a total fleet of 20 ships under technical management.
Belships' remaining newbuilding program with Imabari Shipbuilding in Japan includes one 63.000 dwt eco-design Ultramax bulk carrier on a long-term T/C-agreement incl. purchase option for delivery in January 2018.
Financial and corporate matters
As per 30 September the Group's cash totaled USD 8.4 million compared to USD 8.6 million as per 30 June 2016.
The mortgage debt balance as per 30 September USD was 37.5 million. Net lease obligation as at 30 September was USD 45.0 million. In addition Belships has a long-term loan facility of SGD 2 million, secured by the lease agreement for our Singapore office. Net lease obligation and mortgage debt were reduced by USD 1.8 million in 3rd quarter.
Hedging the Group's interest exposure is considered on an ongoing basis. The hedging level of interest rate exposure is currently around 75% (leases excluded). The long-term interest rate is still at a historical low level.
At the end of the 3rd quarter of 2016, the book value per share amounted to NOK 3.27 (USD 0.41), while the equity ratio was 17.7%. Added value related to the long-term charter party for M/S Belisland is not reflected in the balance sheet.
The Capesize-index ended the 3rd quarter at USD 12,710 per day, whereas the Panamax-index ended at USD 5,815 per day. The Supramax-index ended the quarter at USD 7,180 per day. As per today the Cape index stands at USD 9,128 per day, Panamax-index at USD 7,386 per day and Supramax-index at USD 7,370 per day.
There is an increasing buying interest for modern dry bulk tonnage. It is typically the traditional ship owning companies that are active, not the fund managers as we saw in 2012-13. More than 400 dry cargo ships have changed hands year-to-date in transactions close to USD 4 bn. According to the Baltic S&P Assessment the latest valuation of a 5-year old Supramax is USD 12.9 m.
Growing demand from China has pushed up the international prices for both iron ore and coal. It is believed that China will be forced to shut down loss-making and high pollution domestic production of iron ore and coal and import more, helping to absorb some of the tonnage overcapacity. The smaller sized ships like Supramax/Ultramax with cranes should benefit from growing Chinese exports of steel products and imports of minor bulks like bauxite, fertilizer, soya beans and grains.
Belships is concentrating 100% on the dry bulk market, with 5 x modern Supramax/Ultramax in service. In addition we will take delivery of a 63,000 dwt Ultramax from Imabari Shipbuilding in January 2018 for long term lease incl. purchase option.
Iron ore import to China in 2016 is expected to reach a record high of about 1bn tons, and the imported volumes of coal are also higher compared to last year. For the aggregate market this translates into a ton-mile demand growth of approx 2%.
Ordering of new ships is down to almost zero and the high scrapping activity continues, although at a slower pace than during Q1-Q2. The scrapping activity this year may still end up around 35-40 m dwt, which, if so, will almost outbalance the expected deliveries of new ships during 2016 adjusted for slippage, delays and cancellations. From troubled Chinese shipyards we expect non-deliveries or slippage of a significant number of Ultramaxes scheduled for delivery in 2016-17.
Belships ships are chartered out on fixed rates to reputable counterparts, representing a future nominal gross hire of around USD 70 million.
Focus will be to further develop Belships as an owner and operator of modern bulk carriers to reputable counterparts. Our ambition is to build a portfolio of quality ships and robust charter parties that will generate distributable cash flows.
Oslo, 25 October 2016
THE BOARD OF BELSHIPS ASA
Questions may be directed to :
CEO Ulrich Müller
Phone: +47 22 52 76 15