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Star Bulk Announces Agreements to Construct Two 180,000 DWT Capesize & Two 60,000 DWT Ultramax Fuel Efficient Newbuildings and New Employments for Part of Its Fleet

Jul 11 2013 12:00AM

Marketwire

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ATHENS, GREECE -- (Marketwired) -- 07/11/13 -- Star Bulk Carriers Corp. (the "Company" or "Star Bulk") (NASDAQ: SBLK), today announced that on July 5, 2013 the Company has entered into agreements with Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. shipyard for the construction of two 180,000 DWT eco-type, fuel efficient Capesize drybulk vessels to be delivered in Q4 2015 and Q1 2016, respectively. In addition, the Company has entered into letters of intent, which are subject to the negotiation and execution of definitive documentation, with a major Japanese shipyard for the construction of two 60,000 DWT eco-type, fuel efficient Ultramax drybulk vessels to be delivered within 2015. The aggregate purchase price of the four newbuilding vessels is approximately $151.0 million.

The Company also announced that it received a letter from the receivers of STX Pan Ocean Co. Ltd., or STX, terminating the charter agreement for the vessel, Star Borealis, effective immediately. Currently, STX owes the Company approximately USD $653,000. The Company intends to vigorously pursue all amounts owed to it under the charter agreement, including any related damages caused by the termination of the charterparty, under the STX rehabilitation proceedings, which have commenced in Korea. Under the STX charter, this vessel earned a daily net time charter rate of USD $24,255. The Company has re-employed the vessel on a voyage charter at a daily time charter equivalent of approximately USD $27,000.

Additionally, the Company announced that it has chartered two of its Supramax vessels with major international companies; the Star Gamma is chartered for approximately one year at a gross daily time charter rate of USD $9,400 and the Star Omicron is chartered for minimum three months up to a maximum of five months at a gross daily time charter rate of USD $10,750.

About Star Bulk
Star Bulk is a global shipping company providing worldwide seaborne transportation solutions in the dry bulk sector. Star Bulk's vessels transport major bulks, which include iron ore, coal and grain and minor bulks which include bauxite, fertilizers and steel products. Star Bulk was incorporated in the Marshall Islands on December 13, 2006 and maintains executive offices in Athens, Greece. Its common stock trades on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol "SBLK". Currently, Star Bulk has an operating fleet of thirteen dry bulk carriers. The total fleet consists of five Capesize and eight Supramax dry bulk vessels with a combined cargo carrying capacity of 1,290,602 deadweight tons. The average age of our current operating fleet is approximately 10.5 years. Additionally, we have four third-party dry bulk vessels under our management, consisting of one Capesize vessel, two Supramax vessels and one Panamax vessel and we have been sub-contracted for certain management services, including crewing, purchasing and insurances, for six product tankers. The total combined cargo carrying capacity of these vessels amounts to 634,729 deadweight tons.

Forward-Looking Statements
Matters discussed in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements. The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 provides safe harbor protections for forward-looking statements in order to encourage companies to provide prospective information about their business. Forward-looking statements include statements concerning plans, objectives, goals, strategies, future events or performance, and underlying assumptions and other statements, which are other than statements of historical facts.

The Company desires to take advantage of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and is including this cautionary statement in connection with this safe harbor legislation. The words "believe," "anticipate," "intends," "estimate," "forecast," "project," "plan," "potential," "may," "should," "expect," "pending" and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements.

The forward-looking statements in this press release are based upon various assumptions, many of which are based, in turn, upon further assumptions, including without limitation, examination by the Company's management of historical operating trends, data contained in its records and other data available from third parties. Although the Company believes that these assumptions were reasonable when made, because these assumptions are inherently subject to significant uncertainties and contingencies which are difficult or impossible to predict and are beyond the Company's control, the Company cannot assure you that it will achieve or accomplish these expectations, beliefs or projections.

In addition to these important factors, other important factors that, in the Company's view, could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements include the strength of world economies and currencies, general market conditions, including fluctuations in charter rates and vessel values, changes in demand for dry bulk shipping capacity, changes in the Company's operating expenses, including bunker prices, drydocking and insurance costs, the market for the Company's vessels, availability of financing and refinancing, changes in governmental rules and regulations or actions taken by regulatory authorities, potential liability from pending or future litigation, general domestic and international political conditions, potential disruption of shipping routes due to accidents or political events, vessels breakdowns and instances of off-hires and other factors. Please see our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a more complete discussion of these and other risks and uncertainties. The information set forth herein speaks only as of the date hereof, and the Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update any forward-looking statements as a result of developments occurring after the date of this communication.



Contacts:

Company:
Simos Spyrou
CFO
Star Bulk Carriers Corp.
c/o Star Bulk Management Inc.
40 Ag. Konstantinou Av.
Maroussi 15124
Athens, Greece
www.starbulk.com

Investor Relations / Financial Media:
Nicolas Bornozis
President
Capital Link, Inc.
230 Park Avenue, Suite 1536
New York, NY 10169
Tel. (212) 661-7566
E-mail: starbulk@capitallink.com
www.capitallink.com





Source: Marketwire