Star Bulk Carriers Agrees to Acquire 15 Dry Bulk Vessels


Star Bulk Carriers Corp., a global shipping company focusing on transportation of dry bulk cargoes, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement with Songa Bulk pursuant to which the Company will acquire 15 operating vessels for an aggregate of 13.725 million common shares of Star Bulk and USD 145 million in cash.

The cash portion of the consideration will be financed through proceeds of a new five-year capital lease of USD 180 million with China Merchants Bank Leasing with a margin of 280 bps, thus offering approximately USD 35 million of additional liquidity for Star Bulk.

Details of the vessels to be acquired from Songa:

Vessel                        YoB    Yard   DWT

Songa Claudine           2011   STX     181,258

Songa Opus                2010   STX     180,706

Songa Mountain          2009   Hyundai 179,150

Songa Hirose              2011   Sanoyas 83,494

Songa Genesis            2010   STX       82,705

Songa Maru                2008   Tsuneishi 82,687

Songa Grain               2008   Tsuneishi  82,672

Songa Moon               2012   Tsuneishi  82,158

Songa Hadong            2012   Tsuneishi  82,158

Songa Devi                2014    Tsuneishi  81,918

Songa Delmar            2011    Hyundai    81,501

Songa Sky                 2010    Sumitomo  81,466

Songa Flama              2011   STX            80,448

Songa Wave               2017   COSCO Dalian 61,491

Songa Glory               2012   COSCO Nantong 58,680

Total:                                                           1,482,492

The Vessel Purchase Transaction remains subject to, among other things, the approval of the Songa shareholders and other customary closing conditions, and is expected to be consummated in by the third quarter of 2018. Companies controlled by Messrs. Arne Blystad, Magnus Roth and Herman Billung, representing approximately 29% of the outstanding shares of Songa, have committed to vote in favor of the Vessel Purchase Transaction on terms customary for such undertakings.

Upon completion of the Songa transaction, Mr. Arne Blystad will be appointed to the Board of Directors of Star Bulk and Mr. Herman Billung will join the management team of Star Bulk, contributing his approximately 30 years of dry bulk and capital market experience.

Songa is expected to distribute the Consideration Shares to its shareholders following closing of the transaction.  As a result of the contemplated transactions, shareholders of Songa are expected to own approximately 14.9% of the outstanding common shares of the Company, and the pre-existing top 5 shareholders of the Company would own approximately 38.7%, 4.4%, 3.9%, 1.0% and 1.0% of the outstanding common shares of the Company respectively.

After giving effect to the Vessel Purchase Transactions, Star Bulk will have a fleet of 108 vessels on a fully delivered basis, aggregate cargo-carrying capacity of approximately 12.26 million deadweight tons and vessels with an average age of 7.1 years.

Sea News, May 15