Daily News: August 8, 2013

CIT Maritime Provides Financing to Alterna to Acquire Tankers

CIT Maritime Finance provided a $61.8 million senior secured credit facility to a portfolio company of Alterna Capital Partners, a private equity firm based in Wilton, CT, to finance the acquisition of three 50,000 DWT ECO-design Medium Range (MR) IMO II/III product/chemical tankers from STX Offshore & Shipbuilding.

The tankers are owned by Sterling Ocean Shipping, which is majority owned and controlled by Alterna, with technical management provided by Fleet Management Limited. All three vessels have been placed under long-term time charters with Stena Weco, a shipper of petroleum products, edible oils and easy chemicals. The Sterling MR tankers represent the first in a series of STX next-generation ECO MR tanker designs.

CIT Maritime Finance structured and facilitated the transaction, while financing was provided by CIT Bank. The transaction has a five-year term; additional terms were not disclosed. This transaction represents CIT’s third transaction with Alterna; the first two involved financing a portion of the construction cost and, later, of the delivered cost of the American Phoenix, a U.S.-flagged Jones Act-qualified chemical tanker.

“We are proud to provide Alterna with this financing and further expand our loan portfolio in the maritime industry,” said Svein Engh, managing director and group head of CIT Maritime Finance. “This is our third transaction with Alterna, which further highlights our expertise in the sector and our continued commitment to support our clients’ growth initiatives.”

Eric Press, managing partner of Alterna Capital Partners said, “We are pleased to partner once again with CIT to finance these three ECO-ships. This is our third maritime finance transaction with CIT and its team has clearly demonstrated a deep expertise in the industry.”