Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Future of CSAV

As mentioned last month CSAV is in financial trouble. They think they have vessel owners over a barrel in their negotiations

From Lloyd's List

CSAV was said by participants to have been uncompromising in the negotiations, using its threatened bankruptcy as a bargaining tool.

After last month’s Hamburg meeting, CSAV said it had asked shipowners to contribute $400m to its equity base and claimed the plan had met “a positive response”.

Owners said, however, that they had proposed modifications to CSAV’s offer.

Owners had little alternative but to save CSAV, as an insolvency of the line would mean a huge number of vessels spilling over onto stressed charter markets. “Everybody wants to avoid another Lehman effect,” said a manager close to the negotiations.

I don't know if I agree with that last statement. Everyone said they couldn't allow GM to file bankruptcy, but it looks as if they will.

This is my best guess. CSAV will file bankruptcy, and some other ocean carrier will come in and pick them up for cents on the dollar, with backing from the vessel owners. As long as the purchasing company agreed to keep the ships on charter (probably at reduced rates) it would solve the problem.

I think it will take about 3-6 months for this to play out. It will be interesting to watch.

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