TORM turns the corner - back in the black

Mar 09 2018

Danish product tanker owner, TORM has declared a profit before tax of $3 mill for 2017, compared to a loss of $142 mill for the previous year.

EBITDA was $158 mill, compared to $200 mill in 2016.


TORM described its 2017 performance as satisfactory, considering the market conditions.


"I am satisfied that we were able to remain profitable in 2017, despite a challenging product tanker market. In 2017, we have expanded the fleet through a number of attractively priced vessel acquisitions and completed a dual listing on NASDAQ in New York and Copenhagen, and in January, 2018 we raised $100 mill in new equity for further growth," explained executive director, Jacob Meldgaard.


For the 12 months, TORM achieved average TCE rates of $14,621 per day, compared with $16,050 per day in 2016. 


Despite a healthy consumer-driven demand for refined oil products, the record high clean petroleum product inventory levels, which were built up globally during 2015 and 2016, had a negative impact on the market in 2017.


Inventory drawdown was an overriding theme in 2017, which naturally had a negative impact on product tanker demand. Global stocks of clean petroleum products decreased by a volume equivalent to a loss of potential trade of 4%, the company said.


Last year, TORM acquired six MR resales and firmed up newbuilding options for two LR1s for a total of $259 mill. Two of the MR resales were delivered in the third quarter of 2017. TORM said it had bank financing in place for the eight vessels.


As of 31st December, 2017, TORM's order book stood at 10 newbuildings - four LR2s, four MRs and two LR1s, all from Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI). The LR2s are expected to be delivered this year and the MRs and the LR1s in 2019 through the first quarter of 2020. Outstanding capex relating to the orderbook and vessel purchases totalled $307 mill.


In addition to the acquisitions, TORM sold five older vessels - one MR and four Handysize vessels. TORM also undertook three sale and leaseback transactions that were treated as financial leases, although they had no purchase obligation attached.


On 11th December, 2017, TORM listed its A-shares on NASDAQ in New York. TORM's shares are now dual-listed in Copenhagen and New York, which enables shareholders to move their shares between the two exchanges.


The company said that over time, a dual listing will attract further investor interest, which will strengthen its strategic and financial flexibility.


Subsequently, on 26th January, 2018, TORM completed the raising of $100 mill. This new equity strengthens its ability to pursue attractively priced growth opportunities, the company said.


As at the end of last year, TORM's available liquidity was $405 mill, consisting of $134 mill in cash and $271 mill in undrawn credit facilities. Net interest-bearing debt amounted to $620 mill. 


Around 13% of the total earning days this year have been covered at $18,814 per day. As of 2nd March, 2018, 27% of the total earning days were covered at $15,792 per day average.


An in-depth look at TORM will be included in Tanker Operator’s April issue.


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