SFL Corporation Ltd. (NYSE: SFL) (“SFL” or the “Company”) announced today that it has entered into an agreement with a major European-based automobile manufacturer to charter two newbuild dual-fuel 7,000 CEU car carriers for a 10-year period from delivery in 2023. The contract is on a time-charter basis, and until the new vessels are delivered they will charter our two existing car carriers SFL Composer and SFL Conductor. Concurrently, SFL has agreed to construct the two newbuild vessels at a leading shipyard in China, subject to final documentation.
The transaction is estimated to add more than $200 million in fixed-rate charter backlog, and we are adding state-of-the-art vessels designed to use liquefied natural gas (LNG) to our fleet. In addition, we intend to cooperate with our customer to use eco-friendly bio-fuel for the propulsion of the two existing vessels.
Ole B. Hjertaker, CEO of SFL Management, said in a comment: «We are extremely honoured to be selected by an industry leading automobile manufacturer with clear environmental ambitions. This transaction shows our commitment to invest in assets with lower carbon footprint and also how we can improve performance of existing vessels through the use of alternative fuels, in line with our ESG strategy.
Over the last 10 years, SFL’s fleet has transitioned from predominately oil production and transportation assets, to mainly consisting of containerships and dry bulk vessels today. Including this new transaction, our fixed-rate charter backlog from shipping assets will be more than $2.4 billion.»
April 28, 2021
The Board of Directors
SFL Corporation Ltd.
Investor and Analyst Contacts:
Aksel Olesen, Chief Financial Officer, SFL Management AS
+47 23 11 40 36
André Reppen, Senior Vice President & Chief Treasurer, SFL Management AS
+47 23 11 40 55
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 more than 80 vessels is split between tankers, bulkers, container vessels 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 including fluctuations in charter hire rates and vessel values, changes in demand in the markets in which the Company operates, changes in demand resulting from changes in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ petroleum production levels and worldwide oil consumption and storage, developments regarding the technologies relating to oil exploration, 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, 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 any potential restructuring of Seadrill, timely delivery of vessels under construction within the contracted price, 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, including any changes to energy and environmental policies and changes attendant to trade conflicts, potential disruption of shipping routes due to accidents or political events, the length and severity of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak and its 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.