Gulf Navigation expands fleet, develops shipyard in Khor Fakkan
Dubai-based Gulf Navigation Holding has embarked on an ambitious fleet expansion programme that aims to increase the size of its fleet to 36 ships by 2021.
The company also plans to develop ship repair, logistics and ship agency services in Khor Fakkan and Fujairah; and the expansion of its presence in Abu Dhabi by the end of 2017.
Six new tankers have been ordered in China, with deliveries due to start from mid-2018, and further newbuilding contracts are under consideration. In addition, Gulf Navigation plans to acquire further vessels on the second hand market. “We are looking to add vessels of various types, including product tankers,” Khamis says.
These announcements were made as part of the company’s re-branding as it seeks to put its past debt problems behind it.
All past debts have now been settled and the company posted a net profit of US$ 2.4 million in the first quarter of 2017, 39% higher than in the same period of 2016.
As he did with Dubai Drydocks, group chief executive, Khamis Juma Buamim has been able to turn the company’s fortunes around.
“This rebranding exercise is important to us as it reflects the fact that the past is behind us, we are moving in the right direction and we are now focused on expansion and implementing new plans for the future,” he said.
“We already have an office in Abu Dhabi, but we plan to be able to offer a full range of services there later this year,” adds Khamis.
The company has also entered into several joint venture arrangements, with the aim of diversifying its business, over the past year, and may enter into more arrangements of this type in future.
To fund its expansion plans, Gulf Navigation is currently taking the necessary measures to issue Islamic Sukuk, with a total value of US$ 250 million. This will be done through a public offering that is repayable at a profit rate of no more than 10%.