John Fredriksen spends $610 Million on new ships and indicates that he may make more purchases this year.
Shipping tycoon, John Fredriksen, ordered six oil tankers from STX offshore & Shipbuilding Co. for $210 million. And as, Golar LNG’s chairman he placed $400 million worth of orders with Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries Co. for two ships to haul liquefied natural gas. The company says they’re in talks for additional orders.
Analysts say that Fredriksen knows what he is doing and that as a first- mover he’ll benefit from low shipbuilding prices. Medium range tanker prices have fallen 37-percent since they’re peak in 2007 and new shipbuilding in Asia has been falling since 2009 in an effort to secure contracts.
The tankers ordered from STX are medium range vessels that can each carry 50,000 deadweight tons of oil products. Industry experts say these medium range tankers have the greatest potential for profits in the next several years.
There are reports that Forbes 72nd richest man will place another substantial order for VLCC’s near the end of the year.
Fredriksen, 67, a native of Norway but not a citizen of Cyprus for tax reasons is worth an estimate $10.7 billion. His fortune rests in public and private investments in shipping spanning across vessels, dry-bulk carriers, oil tankers and offshore drilling rigs. His 109-vessel fleet is worth an estimated $3.55 billion.
PHOTO: John Fredriksen receiving the Connecticut Maritime Association's Commodore Award in 2008.