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Largest Vessel Order In Aspo Esl Shipping’s History


ESL Shipping Oy, a subsidiary of Aspo Plc, has ordered two new ice-strengthened dry bulk cargo vessels from the Korean Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co. Ltd, which is one of the world’s leading shipbuilders. The new vessels are clearly bigger than ESL Shipping’s existing vessels, 56,150 dwt supramax class vessels. The total value of the investment is about EUR 60 million. The vessels, which meet the ice class 1A, have been tailored for ESL Shipping and will be delivered in the first half of 2012.

Aspo Group’s financial position enables the vessel investment which is financed with cash flow financing as well as debt financing.

“With its largest vessel investment ever, Aspo is increasing the competitiveness of its shipping company. For us, the turbulence in the global economy has had a positive effect on new building prices on ships, so now is the right time to invest and strengthen the position of the Baltic Sea’s leading dry cargo shipping company on the growing cargo markets. Changes in tonnage tax legislation have also affected our decisions and we remain confident that the changes to the legislation will be implemented in accordance with the wishes of the Finnish parliament,” explains Aki Ojanen, Aspo’s CEO.

Capacity will grow by over 50 percent

“The Baltic Sea cargo markets will continue growing as the economic development in the area recovers. Simultaneously the need to transport raw materials around the year with ever growing vessels is increasing. We are increasing our capacity by over 50 percent, which means that we can improve and expand the service we offer our existing customers. At the same time, we can participate in new projects where transportation reliability around the year is crucial. The new self-unloading vessels with ice-strengthening are unique in their size class. In the planning, we have paid particular attention to environmental issues and therefore the vessels will include, for instance, ballast water treatment equipment. Ice model testing will be carried out at Aker Arctic’s laboratory in Helsinki,” says Markus Karjalainen, CEO of ESL Shipping.

ESL Shipping transports dry raw material mainly in the Baltic Sea region; in 2009, approximately 11 million tons. The steel industry’s share of transports was 53 percent, and the energy industry represented 43 percent. The shipping company’s fleet consists of 18 vessels, of which it owns 14 in full. Three are time-chartered and one is partially owned. The total capacity is approximately 215,000 tons. In addition, the shipping company will also receive a new 20,000 dwt vessel in the fall of 2010. The vessel has been ordered from India.

Aspo is a conglomerate that owns and develops business operations in the Baltic Sea region focusing on demanding B-to-B customers. Our strong company brands - ESL Shipping, Leipurin, Telko and Kaukomarkkinat - aim to be the market leaders in their sectors. They are responsible for their own operations, customer relationships and the development of these. Together they generate Aspo’s goodwill. Aspo’s Group structure and business operations are continually developed without any predefined schedules


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