Capitalizing on the long established track record of organizing highly successful large scale maritime conferences in major industry centers around the world, the “11th Annual Capital Link Shipping & Marine Services” Forum took place on September 25th 2018 in London, in partnership with Fearnley Securities and in cooperation with the London Stock Exchange.
This event brought together a distinguished group of industry experts and provided a comprehensive review and current outlook of the various shipping markets and also covered topics of critical interest to Shipping Professionals, Financiers & Investors. The participants gained a deeper understanding of the current state of the shipping and marine services industry, the subsequent effects on their investments, and a clear focus on the opportunities and challenges ahead.
Capital Link’s investment conferences, organized across New York, London, Athens, Limassol, Shanghai, Singapore and Tokyo, are known for combining rich informational content, interesting discussions about the shipping and marine services sectors, the financial and capital market, as well as unique promotion and networking opportunities. The London Forum also offered the opportunity for 1x1 meetings between company management teams and investors.
Mr. Nicolas Bornozis, President of Capital Link Inc., in his welcome remarks at the Forum, emphasized that the Forum is now in its 11th year and has developed into the largest investor and maritime finance oriented maritime event in London. In addition to addressing challenges and opportunities across the shipping markets, the Forum this year also tackled new environmental regulations and technology that are among the game changers for the industry. At the same time, the landscape in finance has been changing rapidly with the advent of Chinese Leasing and alternative credit providers. Capital markets have been more active on the debt side while on the equity markets there have been selective follow on offerings or secondary market placements with no new IPOs. He expressed his appreciation for the long standing support from the London Stock Exchange and commented on the continued partnership with Fearnley Securities which has helped elevate the Forum to a new level of quality and effectiveness.
Mr. Rikard Vabo, Managing Director, Corporate Finance - Fearnley Securities in his opening remarks at the Forum, focused on the following main points:
London as a Global Capital Raising & Investment Destination
Section remarks by Mr. Axel Kalinowski, Head of Central and Southern Europe – London Stock Exchange.
Shipping, Shipbuilding and Trade: Overview & Outlook
Section remarks by Dr. Martin Stopford, Non- Executive President - Clarkson Research Services Limited.
“Everything Flows, Nothing Stands Still” Heraclitus - Game Changers & Future of the Shipping Industry (Panel Discussion)
Trends and developments that affect the industry – regulations, technology, market forces etc.
Moderator: Mr. Joshua Apfelroth, Partner – Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP
IMO 2020 – Dilemmas, choices and economics
Mr. Dag Kilen, Senior Analyst – Fearnley Securities, stated: “Most ship owners spent the first 1 ½ years post IMO’s 2020 sulphur cap announcement to be in denial. Or, were they coming up with excuses instead of just saying it as it was – that there was no cash or funding available for huge investments? The trading houses and Oil & Gas majors, the fuel market experts who could not find sufficient incentives for major refinery upgrades, were meanwhile in the market looking for scrubber fitted vessels for TC, or they were ordering scrubbers for installation on their own ships. The latter, combined with IMO confirming the 2020 reality this spring, has lately sparked a sudden and massive interest for scrubbers. The scrubber economics are attractive, as the fuel market is expected to experience an imbalance the first 3-5 years, while payback is expected to be 1-2 years. Scrubbers are however not the long-term solution. For that, we need alternative fuels, LNG and LPG, which today are premature solutions”.
IMO – The Owners Response (Panel Discussion)
Ballast Water Treatment, Sulfur Emissions, Decarbonization – Regulations, Technology, Strategic Options & Capital Considerations
Moderator: Mr. Toby Royal, Partner – Watson Farley Williams LLP
Dry Bulk Sector (Panel Discussion)
Moderator: Mr. Bobby P Mitropoulos, Managing Director - Weberseas (Hellas) SA
Future Proof Ships - The Blueprint for Newbuilds (Presentation)
How the IMO strategy will impact the value of the vessels and what the Owners can do to future proof their assets
Mr. Tore Longva M.Sc, Principal Consultant, International Regulatory Affairs – DNV GL – Maritime, said: “Moving forward the uncertainty facing the industry seem only to increase. Regulations on SOx and CO2 are poised to shape the future fleet. Simultaneously, fuel and technology are developing rapidly, with potential game-changing consequences. Looking 100 years back we find very recognizable ships. The main changes have been on ship size and cargo types, and not on design and fuel. Can we expect that the ships built in 10 and 20 years will be as similar as those sailing today? Design options should be stress-tested under possible future scenarios to ensure that they are future-proof and remain competitive towards future designs.”
Bank Finance (Panel Discussion)
Moderator: Mr. Tony Rice, Partner – HFW
Mr. Joep Gorgels, Global Head Transportation & Logistics Clients, Corporate and Investment Banking – ABN AMRO Bank
Mr. Michael Parker, Global Industry Head for Shipping – Citi
Mr. Christos Tsakonas, Head of Global Shipping – DNB
Mr. Michiel Steeman, Managing Director, Shipping Finance Europe – DVB Bank SE
LNG Sector (Panel Discussion)
Moderator: Mr. Peder Nicolai Jarlsby, Shipping Equity Research – Fearnley Securities
Mr. Jon Skule Storheill, CEO – Awilco LNG
Mr. Oystein M. Kalleklev, CEO and CFO – Flex LNG
Mr. Alastair Maxwell, CFO – GasLog Ltd.
Mr. Stuart Buchanan, Head–Investor Relations – Golar LNG
Mr. Richard Tyrrell, CEO/CFO – Höegh LNG Partners
Capital Markets & Private Equity (Panel Discussion)
Moderator: Mr. Richard Hakes, Partner – Reed Smith LLP
Alternative Finance & Yield (Panel Discussion)
Moderator: Mr. Rolf Johan Ringdal, Partner – BAHR
The panel on “Alternative Finance & Yield”, moderated by Partner Rolf Johan Ringdal of Lawfirm BAHR, Oslo, discussed the increasing relevance and importance of various leasing and fund initiatives at a time when traditional banks keep retreating from the financing of vessels and oil service units. Topics included differences between lessors in ownership and sponsorships, funding approaches and strategies, and the pros and cons of diversity and portfolio assessment versus focused segment approaches. Also discussed, was the role of, and some recent developments in relation to, Asian leasing companies. Mr. Ringdal stated: “I thought the panelists offered a lively discussion, which proved that providers of alternative finance are innovative players who, no doubt, will play an increasingly important role in the financing of the shipping and oil service industries.”
Product Tankers Sector (Panel Discussion)
Moderator: Mr. Espen L. Fjermestad, Shipping Equity Research – Fearnley Securities
Crude Oil Tankers Sector (Panel Discussion)
Moderator: Dr. Arlie G. Sterling, President & Co–Founder – Marsoft Inc.
Dr. Arlie G. Sterling, President & Co–Founder – Marsoft Inc. shared Marsoft’s Q3 2018 Tanker Market Outlook (see www.marsoft.com for market commentary) and posed these topics to the Panel:
More information about the Conference here