Damen will present its new vessel leasing fund, which is specifically designed for African shipowners, at the first Damen Fishing Seminar being held in Cape Town on 22 November.
Damen Finance Manager, Francesco Verschuren, who will speak at the Seminar and is a specialist in financing in Africa, comments: “The new fund is particularly interesting for smaller, private fishing vessel owners. We are using our years of experience to support them with their vessel financing based on a leasing agreement.” Damen has delivered more than 1,200 vessels to customers in Africa over the years.
Each lease agreement is tailormade for the customer, he stresses. The customer begins by chartering the vessel for a certain number of years, while at the same time repaying the loan and the applicable interest. They then have the option to purchase the vessel during the tenor of the agreement and the obligation after the repayment period.
The Damen fund, ‘Africa Ship Leasing’, gives shipowners an option when they don’t necessarily have the cash to make a large down payment on a vessel which is the case in traditional financing arrangements with a bank, or when local financing solutions are not available.
“By making use of the Africa fund, customers can own a state-of-the-art Damen vessel in just a few years and tap into new business opportunities straightaway. Financing a new vessel from the fund has the advantage of being both very flexible and each lease agreement is custom-made to the shipowner’s requirements,” emphasises Mr Verschuren. The vessel can be built locally at Damen Shipyards Cape Town or at one of Damen’s shipyards worldwide.
Africa Ship Leasing was established in May 2018 and is already assisting owners in both Nigeria and Angola. Financing is available in both Euros or US dollars, and Africa Ship Leasing is partnering first class Dutch banks.
Through holding the first Fishing Seminar, Damen said it is aiming to create a platform whereby the industry can come together with the government and exchange information about the latest developments in the sector and the new technologies and innovative ideas driving the growth of a sustainable fishing industry.