By L. Karageorgos
Navios Maritime Partners and Capital Maritime & Trading are among the Greek-owned shipping companies that have recently allocated tens of millions of dollars for the purchase of vessels auctioned off by creditor banks this year.
According to figures published by Vesselsvalue, US-based shipowners and Greek nationals took the lead in terms of purchases of "distress vessels".
Navios is run by Angeliki Frangou, while Capital Maritime & Trading is headed up by Vangelis Marinakis, the owner of the Olympiacos football club in Piraeus and a majority owner of Nottingham Forest FC.
Specifically, US-based shipping companied scooped up 52 vessels in auctions, with a total outlay of 624 million USD.
Greece-based shipping interests came in a distant second over the current year, picking up 20 vessels, with a total expenditure of 385 million USD.
What's noteworthy, according to Vesselsvalue, is the fact that US interests hadn't bought a single vessel in a bank auction in 2016, something that points to an "about-face" in terms of strategy regarding distressed second-hand ships.
Navios Μaritime Partners purchased the most vessels in this manner, although the company is designated as an American firm, given its New York City headquarters.
Navios purchased 14 container ships from Rickmers Maritime last April by spending 113 million USD, as the latter announced it was exiting the container sector. Of the 14, 11 have a capacity of 4.250 TEUs. The specific sale was the third mass purchase of vessels over the years by Frangou and the companies she controls.
In terms of companies it considers as Greece-based, Vesselsvalue said Marinakis' Capital Maritime & Trading purchased five vessels for 165 million USD, followed by Alassia Newships Management with two vessels for a total of 48.3 million USD.