Jacques de Chateauvieux has moved to tackle losses for his Jaccar Holdings with the sale of all eight of its Evergas ethylene carriers.

TradeWinds reported on Tuesday that Denmark-based Evergas is selling the octet to partners in the Unigas pool in a deal worth an estimated $204m.

Partners Bernhard Schulte, Sloman Neptun and Ultragas are reportedly paying between $25m and $26m for each of the 12,000-cbm ships.

The 12,000-cbm JS Greenspeed is one of the ethylene carriers sold by Evergas Photo: Pascal Bredal/Marine Traffic

Brokers said Chateauvieux has substantially bigger challenges with another subsidiary of Jaccar, the French-listed offshore giant Bourbon.

The 12,000-cbm ethylene carriers sold by Evergas

  • JS Greensail (built 2014)
  • JS Greensand (built 2014)
  • JS Greensea (built 2013)
  • JS Greensky (built 2013)
  • JS Greenspeed (built 2014)
  • JS Greenstar (built 2013)
  • JS Greenstone (built 2014)
  • JS Greensun (built 2013)

That company is listed with 508 units that have logged a utilisation rate of 51.6% and posted losses of €406.1m ($467m) in the first six months of 2018.

Bourbon expects a “persistently low” rate environment in the offshore support vessel sector, and it is looking for new financing and new partners.

Waiver renewal

Early this month, Bourbon announced it had renewed a waiver with the most of its lenders, allowing it to suspend debt payments.

Chateauvieux, at one point, reportedly sought a merger between Bourbon and LPG specialist Evergas, but that did not materialise.

About a year ago, Evergas put its eight ethylene carriers up for sale with Steem1960 in Oslo as exclusive broker.

Not surprisingly, Evergas is taking a loss on the sale of the ships, which were reportedly ordered in China for about $38m each.

TradeWinds understands that there were other potential buyers for the vessels, which Evergas sought to sell because they had not made a profit since they were delivered in 2013 and 2014.

Evergas chief executive Steffen Jacobsen confirmed the eight ships are being sold to the Unigas partners.

He declined to comment on the price and insisted the creditors have not exercised any pressure for the company to dispose of these ships.

'Asset decision'

“This was an asset decision. These ethylene carriers have been loss-making since they were delivered,” Jacobsen said.

LPG brokers suggested the buyers are getting the vessels at an attractive price. VesselsValue suggests they have a market value of between $26.9m and $30m each.

Jacobsen said Evergas does not have plans to sell off more ships.

The company also owns eight semi-refrigerated ships and six pressurised LPG carriers.

Brokers think it is unlikely the other 14 ships will be sold shortly as they are employed in a fairly stable market.