Maritime law firm Watson Farley & Williams has reported it advised Okeanis Eco Tankers, the Piraeus-headquartered shipping group owned by the Alafouzos family, on the US$100M IPO of its new eco-friendly US$1Bn crude tanker fleet on Oslo’s Merkur Market.
Okeanis Eco Tankers’ fleet consists of three Aframax and three Suezmax tankers, four of which currently have time charters in place. It also has eight VLCCs under construction at Hyundai Heavy Industries’ Ulsan yard in South Korea.
According to Watson Farley & Williams’, the funds raised from the IPO will cover Okeanis Eco Tankers’ funding needs well into next year. This is the first maritime listing by a vehicle owned by the Alafouzos family, who have been active in the shipping sector since the 1960s and the tanker market since the 1980s.
The cross-border Watson Farley & Williams Maritime team advising Okeanis Eco Tankers was led by London partners Frank Dunne and George Macheras, with associate Marinos Papadopoulos assisting. New York corporate partner Steve Hollander advised on the Marshall Islands aspects of the transaction, with associate Daniel Berger.
“We are delighted to have advised a highly respected industry leader on their first ever maritime listing, especially given that they are set to become the Alafouzos family’s primary vehicle for tanker activities. With the Merkur market widely recognised for the speed with which its IPOs can be completed, sometimes in less than a month, this was a challenging transaction completed to a tight timeframe, and that Okeanis opted for WFW to advise them is testament to our unrivalled expertise on complex, cross-border maritime matters,” said Watson Farley & Williams partner George Macheras.
The Watson Farley & Williams team worked closely with leading Norwegian maritime firm Advokatfirmaet BAHR, which acted as Norwegian counsel. Fearnley Securities, the Oslo-based independent investment bank focused on the shipping, offshore and energy sectors advised Okeanis Eco Tankers on the listing arrangements.