Seaspan takes advantage of champagne sale

To most on the west coast, Seaspan is a prominent name, hauling barges every which way all over the coast. Now, Seaspan is also becoming quite an established name in the container ship business too. And judging from the recent spats of new build deliveries, those head honcho must have a sore hand cutting all those ribbons and breaking champagne bottles.

Seaspan has taken delivery of no less than 10 new major container ships, so far this year. In July alone, two ships joined the fleet within days of each other, the 8,500 TEU COSCO Indonesia and the 4250 TEU CSAV Lebu, both already chartered out; the Indonesia on a 12 year charter, the Lebu on a six year charter. Take that Government of Canada, who can't seem to make up their minds for 20 years on one small ship! Seaspan is not done yet, they have another 16 vessels due to be delivered over the next 21 months.

Seaspan Corporation owns the ships, but they are chartered to other "marquee" shipping companies like Hapag Lloyd, Cosco, CSCL, MOL and others. The company falls under the Washington group of companies umbrella led by its founder, Denis Washington, and has 53 ships in operation, with another 16 new builds under way. The management of their vessels is taken care by Vancouver based Seaspan Ship Management, and crews them out of Seaspan Crew Management Ltd. based in Mumbai, India. All their ships fly the Hong Kong flag, and they are classed mostly by Lloyds and DNV, with a few under Germanischer Lloyd.

Although their shares, traded on the New York Stock Exchange as SSW, has taken a beating over the last couple of years, they seem to have weathered the storm that battered the industry. The all time high value for their shares was 37 dollars; they have been hovering around the 10 dollar mark since November 2008.

Vancouver also host the corporate headquarters of another shipping titan, TeeKay Shipping, having a significant presence in the oil transportation sector, operation 157 tankers with an average age of 10 years.

Pictures are of COSCO Korea top, and COSCO Indonesia, from the internets.

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