Greece-based Diana Shipping has announced a master agreement with Sea Trade Holdings to acquire nine Ultramax dry bulk vessels for a combined purchase price of $330m.     

The company will carry out the acquisition through its separate subsidiaries.

Of the total purchase price, the company will pay $220m in cash and $110m in the form of 18,487,395 newly issued common shares in aggregate.

Built between 2015 and 2018, the vessels are expected to be delivered during the fourth quarter of the year.

At present, Diana Shipping is in talks with a major European lender for a new credit facility to fund the balance of the cash purchase price.  

The common shares will be issued following the delivery of each vessel.

The proposed acquisition will bring the number of dry bulk vessels in Diana Shipping’s fleet to 43.

This will include four Newcastlemax, 11 Capesize, five Post-Panamax, six Kamsarmax, eight Panamax and nine Ultramax vessels.

According to Diana Shipping, the total carrying capacity of its fleet, including m/v Baltimore, is nearly 4.5 million dwt, with a weighted average age of 10.53 years.

After the completion of the latest acquisition and the sale of m/v Baltimore, the carrying capacity of its fleet will be more than 4.9 million dwt.

Diana Shipping signed a Memorandum of Agreement to sell the dry bulk vessel m/v Baltimore to OceanPal in June.

Diana Shipping’s vessels are mainly employed on short to medium-term time charters to transport dry bulk cargoes.

In this deal, Seward & Kissel acted as legal advisor for Diana Shipping and Evercore served as the company’s financial advisor while Reed Smith LLP was legal advisor for Sea Trade Holdings.