Havila’s ship financing problems

2022-04-13T20:21:07+00:00 April 13th, 2022|Environment|

On 8th April, the EU extended sanctions against Russian companies, including GTLK, the owner of the leasing company in Hong Kong that financed Norwegian coastal vessel, ‘Havila Capella’.

Operator Havila Voyages said that it assumed that the sanctions will prevent GTLK from carrying out the financing of the three vessels being built at the Tersan shipyard in Turkey.

“We support sanctions against Russia in this dire situation the world is in and are now working to refinance ‘Havila Capella’ to break all ties with sanctioned and Russian-owned companies,” CEO, Bent Martini explained.

“’Havila Capella’ is the only one of our ships that is financed and leased from GTLK. The remaining ships are owned by the Tersan shipyard until we take delivery of them,” he added.

All of the vesel’s sailings are planned to go ahead. The ship is registered in the Norwegian Ordinary Ship Register, flies the Norwegian flag, is Norwegian crewed and has a Norwegian operating company.

“Havila Voyages is the operator of ‘Havila Capella’. The ship is approved by the Norwegian authorities and satisfies all requirements in the Norwegian Maritime Act so that it can sail under the Norwegian flag. Even though we have paid rent to a Russian-owned company, the ship is Norwegian for all practical purposes,” Martini stressed.

Martini also revealed that the company had been working with alternative financing for some time.

“We have assessed what has now happened as a possible outcome and have for a period worked to find alternative financing for our coastal cruise ships,” he said.

In the short term, Havila Voyages had planned to take delivery of its second ship, ‘Havila Castor’, very soon. Her scheduled start-up is 10th May from Bergen.

“We have to work with several options. The short-term solution is to take delivery of ‘Havila Castor’ as soon as we can. The slightly more long-term solution is to find an alternative financing for the last two ships under construction, as well as how we will solve ‘Havila Capella’, which is already in operation,” Martini added.

“The ships at the Tersan shipyard are owned by the shipyard until delivery. The plan was to finance the ships through leasing agreements with GTLK Europe and GTLK Asia, two reputable companies in ship financing, but today’s situation makes it impossible for us to use GTLK as a financing institution for our ships,” he explained.

Martini also said it is difficult to say when new financing will be in place, but the company was well underway with the task.

“It is about significant sums of money to finance four coastal cruise ships, and these are complex exercises. It will take some time before everything is landed. We will comply with current sanctions, regulations and Norwegian legislation when refinancing our ships,” Martini concluded.

More information will be given, as soon as there is some clarification on the situation, the company said.

On a lighter note, at last week’s Nor-Shipping event in Oslo, the ‘Havila Capella’, received the Next Generation Ship Award.

On board technology allows her to sail with zero emissions.

This award honours a ship project demonstrating the greatest advances and innovation in design with respect to energy efficiency, suitability & flexibility, technology utilisation, safety & security, and environmental sustainability for the coming decade.

She was designed by Hav Group and built at the Tersan Shipyard in Turkey.

‘Havila Capella’ is a plug-in hybrid ship with the world’s largest battery packs designed for passenger ships. The battery pack weigh 86 tonnes and has a capacity of 6.1 MW/h. These batteries allows her to sail for four hours without noise and emissions.

As a result, she is able to sail quietly and sustainably through the World Heritage fjords and pristine surroundings along the Norwegian coastline.

Havila Voyages has spent more than NOK500 mill to make the vessels environmentally friendly and the battery packs are one of several measures that cut NOx emissions by around 90% and CO2 emissions by about 25%.

In addition, the ships have been designed to run on biogas, a nearly carbon neutral biofuel. She has also been designed to run on hydrogen or ammonia.

‘Havila Capella’s’ new technology was developed in close partnership with Hav Group, Hav Design, Kongsberg Maritime, and scientific networks.