Dry bulk shipping company Scorpio Bulkers completed 11 of its planned 45 scrubber installations but the company said the remainder may be subject to delays
In its financial results for Q1 2020, the company said that as of 20 March, it had 34 vessels scheduled to be retrofitted with scrubbers by 2021 but expects that some may be delayed as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.
The company said that in April 2020, it reached an agreement with its counterparties to postpone the delivery of scrubbers, on thirteen of its vessels until at least 2021 at no additional cost to the company. This is expected to delay the payment of between US$20M and US$25M of expenditures until 2021 at the earliest.
Scorpio Bulkers’ chairman and CEO Emanuele A Lauro said the company’s priority is to ensure the safety of its seafarers and shore staff during the pandemic and added “Beyond that, we have strengthened our balance sheet by vessel sales and sale leasebacks, we have reduced our capital expenditures by adjusting our scrubber installation schedule, we have reduced our quarterly cash dividend, and we have sold a portion of our shareholding in Scorpio Tankers for net proceeds amounting to US$42.7 million. At present, we do not expect to sell any more vessels beyond those assets previously announced as held for sale.”
Mr Lauro added that while the dry bulk market is weak at present, the company expects rates to strengthen over the remainder of the year and said it has hedged or time chartered any of its forward days.
Scorpio Bulkers’ total vessel revenues for Q1 2020 was US$40.8M, compared to US$50.4 M for the corresponding period in 2019. The company estimates the total cost of its scrubber installation programme across all 45 ships at US$95.4M.