Abu Dhabi-based Zakher Marine International Inc. group (ZMI) recently announced the conclusion of a first-of-its-kind financing in the shipping industry worth US $125 million. It is the first China Export and Credit Insurance Corporation, aka, Sinosure supported transaction in the region for a private company in the offshore oil and gas support services sector.
Specifically, the transaction comprised the financing of two high specification lift boats from Wuhan Marine Machinery Plant based in Wuhan, China. The two lift boats, QMS Sentinel and QMS Gladiator, are the latest additions to ZMI’s fleet. Evidently last year, ZMI already undertook the delivery of a sister vessel named QMS Achiever, now amongst many other vessels, successfully operating out of Saudi Arabia. The transaction further enhances ZMI’s ability to serve the offshore oil and gas sector in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and in the Arabian gulf region.
Ramzi Al-Sewaidi, Head of Strategic Projects at ZMI, commented: “This transaction is a first of its kind in the region, paving the way for a long relationship with our financing partners locally and internationally.” He went on to mention: “this acquisition highlights ZMI’s strength and ability to achieve sustained growth and continued diversification.”
The financing is backed by Sinosure, the official export credit agency of the Republic of China. HSBC acted as sole ECA Coordinator, and the transaction also included Mashreq Bank, acting as the bookrunner for the coveted deal, and Bank of Communications Ltd based in China.
Manav Futnani, Head of Export and Specialised Finance MENAT, HSBC commented: “We were delighted to support ZMI on this exciting transaction and congratulate the company on the growth of their fleet. As financial markets in the GCC continue to develop, we see ECA-supported asset financing becoming an increasingly attractive solution for corporates across the region that are looking to grow their business.”
According to Badar Chaudhry, Sector Head of Energy, Mashreq Bank PSC, “The successful close of this landmark financing, which was well oversubscribed, reinforces ZMI’s credentials in the offshore oil and gas sector. The transaction also demonstrates the strong appetite in the GCC financial markets for well-structured asset financing opportunities to support key corporates in the region.”