Searching for partner/ new owner
Shipsforsale Sweden has for about two years time been searching for partners or new owners who are prepared to work as we do and aim to expand and grow. We see that many business colleagues with small purchasing and sales companies have disappeared in recent years, and there are growing internet "brokers" trying to enter the market. We are convinced that our model of selling ships is a path to success. We currently do not have enough muscle to expand and grow bigger. We hardly manage the many tasks we have today. Our dream is to find one that is already established within S&P and realize that if one is to survive and grow big then one has to develop. You must be at the forefront of digital development. Today, everything goes so fast, so you have to run very fast to stay in the same place. Our industry is extremely conservative and we believe that in 7-10 years there are a lot of major brokers gone and new ones have come up on the throne. We wish our little company was one of them. To achieve that we need muscles and power than we have available. The clients are there and the vessels are there. Pleased to hear if you would be interested.
Looking for ships to sell
Right now we are short of geared cargo vessels, small Ice Class tractor tugs, small car ferries and hopper barges to sell. We see that we have more buyers than we have ships and lately, several agreements are completed before we have had time to put them on the website. If you are looking to buy a ship, please contact us. Do you need to sell your ship, please contact us.
This passed year
Another dark year has passed for shipowners in northern Europe. This has clearly reflected our sales as shipbrokers. A lot less phone calls, some days are very quiet in the office, and a lot less e-mails. During the good years in 2007-2008 all our lines were constantly busy and an average of 3500 unique visitors on the website each day. These days we are pleased to see about half of that figure. We see a huge change in those who contact us today compared to the ones looking for ships 4-5 years ago. The majority of today´s clients are knowledgeable and realise what they are letting themselves in to. Before there were people who didn´t have clue about shipping that came to our doorstep and wanted a piece of the action. That kind of buyers are for numerous reasons long gone by now. The other difference is the bank situation and financing. Today it is a lot harder to get finance to buy a ship and some banks are completely against it no matter how promising the contract may look for work. This means that even if we have a golden opportunity, often called "keen Seller, keen Buyer" it´s hard for us to make the sale. Usually the Buyer recieves a positive reply from his local bank and get cut off later on by credit review boards.
On the other hand we see trends that those who sit on a lot of cash actually started to spend it. It´s mostly new ships only a few years old in good condition and for low prices compared to new build. Older ships is still impossible to sell. We see that there will be a couple of really dark years ahead with many bankruptcies within some parts of the shipping industry. Within some areas to many ships has been built to doubtful quality and there is not enough jobs for so many ships on the market. It is also hard to see that those areas will pick up in regards to economists analyzes for the future. Which areas that are affected is commonly known and is not for us to point out.
We´ve noted a growing interest for tug boats and the Buyers are not as interested in the Turkish and Chinese new build which has swarmed the market as they used to be, now they rather look in to older, Europe-origin vessels. There is still a demand for patrol vessels to Africa. The market has decreased in East Africa but compensated will demands from West Africa. Africa has a growing market for all types of vessels, as well as South America where Brasil is the main actor and pushing forward.
Our company had a huge drop in 2009 after the peak in 2008 with negative results and we have slowly increased our profits every year since then. In 2012 we only sold 41 ships and work boats. It is the lowest figure we´ve sold in one single years since we started counting. During the peak years we managed to sell over 100 each year. Despite the decrease in number of vessels, we have managed to increase turnover and profit. The 2012 vessels was sold to Cameroon, Nigeria, Ireland, Sweden, England, Guernsey, Denmark, Belgium, Norway, Iceland, Malta and Congo, to mention some of them. 11 was sold within Sweden. We will continue to make offensive investments for the future and hired 1 more person beginning of 2013 in an effort to stay strong as brokers. We´ve realise after 30 years that this is a very conservative business and will be forced to redintegrate over the coming 5 years. There needs to be a change for the next generation. Most of the Buyers we meet these days in Africa and South America do not even recognize the profession of shipbrokers. They look on the internet for ships to buy. The absolute majority of serious S & P brokers only have a website where they present themselves, not the vessels for sale. On the other hand, the majority of web-based shipbrokers write nothing about themselves on their website. Mainly because they are not really shipbrokers and have no knowledge about ships.
Over the next few years we will use our wide experience in the business, ship knowledge, large contact list and newsletter, new ideas for social exposure in media on the internet as well as more ads in papers and maritime journals to find new ways to multiply the number of sales and increase profits.
We have just hired a new member of staff called Alexander Graff, who will be in charge of all the websites and ads for magazines. We have also launched a huge project in translating all vessels and the website into several languages like Finnish, Turkish, Spanish and French. Further on it will also be supported by Arabic, Greek, Russian and German language. We do not use any of the web-basen translation sites so we are now looking for talented and expert interpreters who knows all technical terms on a ship.
We believe that this will not help us to make more money but it will better assist Buyers and give them, as well as other clients within the shipping business a better product. This way we can make more accurate value assessments and analyses. In other words: "Hang on tight, we´re on the move!"