TOPS shelves share sale

Top Ships has abandoned plans to pursue a Wall Street fundraiser in which it was looking to offload approximately $50m worth of new shares.

In a statement the Athens-based tanker owner said the decision to pull the plug was “voluntary” and follows the recent decline in its stock price.

"The last month, and especially after the filing of our registration statement, our stock price has receded by about 20%,” said chief executive Evangelos Pistiolis.

“Despite the fact that we have identified some excellent investment opportunities, we decided not to proceed with an offering at this point in time.”

Pistiolis argued that his company’s shares, which rose 12.99% to $2.00 on the heels of today’s revelation, are trading at a steep discount to net asset value and pledged to “communicate this to investors”.

“We are optimistic that the current disconnect between our net asset value and stock price will narrow,” the executive continued, adding: “Our overall strategy continues to be focused on growth."

When Top Ships announced plans to pursue a follow-on fundraiser earlier this month it said proceeds would likely be used to fund existing newbuildings and “general corporate purposes”, which could have included the acquisition of secondhand tonnage or additional orders.

Top Ships is headquartered in Athens where it currently oversees one medium-range product tanker and five 50,000-dwt newbuildings that are due for delivery at various intervals between the first quarter of 2015 and third-quarter of 2016.