Not too long ago, shipowners only had to know the broad concepts of a first preferred ship mortgage and would secure a shipping loan on a handshake; for more ambitious among them, the capital horizon was broad enough to include IPOs.Today shipping finance has evolved, bringing new terms in the shipping vocabulary; terms such as junior debt, mezzanine, junior equity, convertible, waterfalls, leasing, alternative funds, sale & leaseback structures, shipping bonds and more. When a shipping loan is out of the question (more often than not), the capital structure gets more complicated where debt comes in tranches (senior and junior), equity in slices (proper and junior), and creditors can get cash, PIK or have the right to become equity holders (convertible). With shipping banks curtailing their activities in shipping, alternative forms of credit moved aggressively to fill the funding gap; from private equity funds and joint ventures, to credit funds and Chinese Leasing. The shipping finance model had to undergo necessary fine-tuning to adjust for realistic market conditions and returns; excess market speculation is out, need-driven financing is in.
In an ever-changing world, competitively priced financing for this capital intensive industry is the secret of success. Whether obtaining financing for legacy transactions or securing financing to expand one’s fleet, from private investors to accessing the capital markets for equity and debt, shipping finance is a topic that a modern, successful shipowner has to master.
Organized by Slide2Open, in association with Boussias Communications, the Slide2Open Shipping Finance 2018 aimed at producing tangible results, while providing delegates with valuable financial and commercial insight into activities, offerings, best practices and trends. The conference took place in Athens, Greece and included:
The Conference was attended by shipowners and top executives in shipping, transport, trade and law firms as well as top executives of the banking, investment and financial sector. By bringing together the two sides of Shipping Finance, and through a combination of keynote speeches, panel discussions, one-to-one interviews, private meetings and parallel events, delegates discussed their activities, expectations and practices when transacting in shipping.
by the Conference’s Moderator: Yuri Bender
Editor-in-Chief, Professional Wealth Management at Financial Times
Principal & Founder, Slide2Open
Minister, Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Insular Policy
Chairman, The Baltic Exchange
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