DryShips has confirmed plans to sell its remaining fleet, with vessels yet again shifting to founder George Economou’s private account.
The NASDAQ-listed company has agreed to sell 17 of its 39 bulkers and their charter agreements to Economou for USD377 million, including assumption of USD236.7 million in associated debt. The vessels to be sold are comprised of 13 Capesizes and four Panamaxes. DryShips will book an impairment loss of USD373 million in 3Q15 as a result of the related-party transaction.
DryShips will be left with a remaining fleet of 20 Panamaxes and two Supramaxes, which will be classified as ‘held for sale’. As a result of this classification, DryShips will book an additional USD422 million impairment charge in 3Q15 – bringing total impairments in that reporting period to USD795 million.
The company previously sold its 10 tankers to Economou for USD536 million. DryShips logged a USD56.5 million impairment in 1Q15 as a result of the tanker fleet sale, plus USD1.48 billion in impairments in 2Q15 related to its offshore and dry bulk holdings. Thus, total impairments in 1Q-3Q15 will be at least USD2.3 billion.
Following the sale of its bulkers, the company would have no remaining wholly owned vessels and its final shipping interests would be comprised of its 40.4% stake in Ocean Rig UDW.
DryShips’ decision to divest its dry bulk fleet prompted its stock to plunge in extremely heavy trading. As of mid-day on 10 September, the company’s shares had dropped over 30% versus the previous day’s close.