SFL Corporation Ltd. (NYSE: SFL) (“SFL” or the “Company”) announced today that it has agreed to charter out six 14,000 TEU container vessels to Hapag-Lloyd AG for a fixed period of five years, following the expiry of the vessels’ existing charters to another container line in 2023-2024. The vessels will then have charter coverage until 2028-2029 at firm rates, reflecting the current strong container market.
The new time charter contracts will add approximately $540 million to SFL’s fixed rate charter backlog, increasing the backlog to $3.8 billion.
Ole B. Hjertaker, CEO of SFL Management AS, said in a comment: «We are excited to build a long term relationship with Hapag-Lloyd, who is the world’s fifth largest container line. This transaction also highlights the value and importance of our strong operational platform and our time charter strategy, enabling us to build strong customer relationships with industry leading counterparties. We have now added more than $1 billion to our charter backlog during the first quarter of 2022 which gives us strong earnings visibility and long term distribution capacity going forward.»
Investor and Analyst Contacts:
Aksel Olesen, Chief Financial Officer, SFL Management AS
+47 23 11 40 36
André Reppen, Chief Treasurer & Senior Vice President, SFL Management AS
+47 23 11 40 55
Marius Furuly, Vice President – IR, SFL Management AS
+47 23 11 40 16
Ole B. Hjertaker, Chief Executive Officer, SFL Management AS
+47 23 11 40 11
SFL has a unique track record in the maritime industry and has paid dividends every quarter since its initial listing on the New York Stock Exchange in 2004. The Company’s fleet of vessels is split between container vessels, bulkers, tankers and offshore drilling rigs. SFL’s long term distribution capacity is supported by a portfolio of long term charters and significant growth in the asset base over time. More information can be found on the Company’s website: www.sflcorp.com
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward Looking Statements
This press release may contain forward looking statements. These statements are based upon various assumptions, many of which are based, in turn, upon further assumptions, including SFL management’s examination of historical operating trends, data contained in the Company’s records and other data available from third parties. Although SFL believes that these assumptions were reasonable when made, because assumptions are inherently subject to significant uncertainties and contingencies which are difficult or impossible to predict and are beyond its control, SFL cannot give assurance that it will achieve or accomplish these expectations, beliefs or intentions.
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, fluctuations in currencies and interest rates, general market conditions in the seaborne transportation industry, which is cyclical and volatile, including fluctuations in charter hire rates and vessel values, changes in demand in the markets in which the Company operates, including shifts in consumer demand from oil towards other energy sources or changes to trade patterns for refined oil products, changes in market demand in countries which import commodities and finished goods and changes in the amount and location of the production of those commodities and finished goods, technological innovation in the sectors in which we operate and quality and efficiency requirements from customers, increased inspection procedures and more restrictive import and export controls, changes in the Company’s operating expenses, including bunker prices, dry-docking and insurance costs, performance of the Company’s charterers and other counterparties with whom the Company deals, the impact of any restructuring of the counterparties with whom the Company deals, including the bankruptcy proceedings relating to Seadrill and certain of its subsidiaries and timely delivery of vessels under construction within the contracted price, governmental laws and regulations, including environmental regulations, that add to our costs or the costs of our customers, potential liability from pending or future litigation, potential disruption of shipping routes due to accidents, political instability, terrorist attacks, piracy or international hostilities, the length and severity of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak and governmental responses thereto and the impact on the demand for commercial seaborne transportation and the condition of the financial markets, and other important factors described from time to time in the reports filed by the Company with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. SFL disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.