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More to come in shipping M&A cycle

Photo: Gerd Altmann - Pixabay Image of handshake on a deal
The ship finance speakers at the annual shipping conference of the American Greek and Norwegian Chambers of Commerce recently believe more merger and acquisitions deals are on the horizon.

Mark Friedman from Evercore talking about the markets, said that “one of the impacts of the stronger markets is increased consolidation…balance sheets are stronger…cash balances are higher”.

“Given what’s going on, the M&A part of our business is the most active,” he said on the finance panel at the conference organised by the Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce and the Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce.

Friedman mentioned the Taylor Maritime takeover Grindrod, the reefer owner Seatrade fleet sale to a large Greek owner, and the Hoegh consolidation in the LNG arena as deals that Evercore has worked on. “The M&A cycle still has some juice left in it,” he noted.

Kevin O’Hara said that AMA Capital Partners had been very active in restructurings, notably in the offshore segment, but that, “we are spending a lot more of our time in strategic advisory…and M&A…with a little bit on capital raising”

Moderator Brian Devine, who works extensively on ship finance deals) suggested that: “What we are seeing are more project type deals…corporate credits contrasted with traditional loans tied to the asset values."