Seaspan Continues Aggressive Fleet Expansion Ordering More Boxships
Reflecting the strong long-term outlook for container shipping, Seaspan is continuing with its aggressive new building and fleet expansion program. The company, which charters ships to the leading carriers ranging from MSC to COSCO, ONE, Maersk, CMA CGM, HAPAG, Yang Ming, and others, announced an additional eight boxship orders today bring the total to 25 new build contracts and two recent acquisitions.
Bing Chen, Chairman, President and CEO of Seaspan, commented, "We continue to accelerate quality growth leveraging our industry-leading scalable and fully integrated platform while strengthening our robust balance sheet and creative customer partnerships. . We continue to stay focused on differentiating our value-added service offering, improving the resiliency of our business model, and extending our industry-leading operational excellence, all while consistently creating sustainable value for our shareholders."
In the latest round of orders, Seaspan said it has entered into an agreement with a major shipyard for the construction of four 12,000 TEU and four 15,000 TEU newbuild containerships. The construction contract also includes an option for four additional 15,000 TEU vessels. The vessel will use conventional fuel oil propulsion and will be fitted with scrubbers. Delivery of the vessels is anticipated to begin in the second half of 2022 and extend through the third quarter of 2023. They will operate on a long-term charter to an unnamed “major liner customer.”
Seaspan is working to build out its dominance in the core 10,000 – 15,000 TEU vessel segment, growing its fleet in the category by 47 percent. In total, they now have 23 vessels on order for this category, as well as two ultra-large 24,000 TEU vessels. The new constructions will add 367,000 TEU to the total fleet, which as of 2020 consisted of 127 vessels with a total capacity of approximately 1,073,000 TEU.
Ten of the new order 15,000 TEU ships will be LNG-powered going under long-term charter to Zim when they are delivered. Industry speculation centers on some of the new constructions being undertaken for MSC while some of the other orders are believed to be for some of the Asian container lines.
Earlier this week, Seaspan also announced that it was acquiring two recently built 15,000 TEU containerships. The two vessels are currently operating on a long-term charter and will be delivered to Seaspan late in the second quarter of 2021.