American Shipper

SeaChange raises funds for expansion

SeaChange raises funds for expansion

   SeaChange Maritime, a Miami-based company that buys and charters containerships, has completed a $100 million private placement. The company said it has now raised a total of $210 million in debt and equity capital.

   Investors have included Capricorn Investment Group, Morgan Stanley Principal Investments, and funds managed by Ospraie Management LLC and Ship Finance International.

   SeaChange, which has two vessels, said the funds would be used to expand its fleet of new or used containerships.

   The company was formed in 2006 by former Sammy Ofer group executives Samuel Norton and Yariv Zghoul to serve as a leading supplier of container vessels for charter to integrated liner operators. Ofer is the Israeli magnate whose shipping holdings include stakes in Zim and Royal Caribbean, though SeaChange is not chartering vessels to Zim.

   The company has initially targeted medium-size vessels.

   Prior to forming SeaChange Maritime, Norton served as senior executive officer of Tanker Pacific Management in Singapore and founded Tanker Pacific Offshore Terminals, a provider of offshore storage and production services for the oil exploration industry.

   'We are pleased to have closed this round of fund raising and look forward to building our business with the support of such distinguished partners,' said Samuel Norton, SeaChange chief executive officer.

   'Our plan is to acquire and operate quality tonnage and to build a fleet tailored to meet the needs of our customers, the liner operators,' said Yariv Zghoul, company president and chief operating officer. 'The continuing expansion and evolution of the container shipping industry promises interesting opportunities for many years to come.'