Onex Elefsis Shipyards is to invest up to $400m over a 15-year period to acquire fellow Greek firm Elfesina Shipyards while financing its operations.

The transaction will be conducted in line with Greek bankruptcy law along with a rehabilitation plan, which is expected to be approved by domestic courts within three to six months.

Onex Elefsis Shipyards has secured the backing of US investment firm Chatsworth Securities for the deal.

The New York-based company has agreed to invest in Elefsina Shipyards and become its institutional credit partner.

Chatsworth managing partner and co-founder Ralph Di Fiore said: “This is a very important cooperation for our group. By joining Onex Elefsis Shipyards with an economic stake in the company, our commitment [to] its success is paramount.

“Onex Shipyards is a very successful group which transforms bankrupted and closed shipyards by creating international competitive advantages, by creating new well-paid jobs and by improving services that are above industry’s standards through innovation, speed and quality.”

Onex is working with Greece’s government and creditors with alternative plans to restart the shipyard’s operations. It is examining how the same process was used by another company of the ONEX Group with Neorion Syros Shipyards.

ONEX Shipyards founder and CEO said: “I have a vision to create a global brand that will enhance the business prospects and reputation of Greece as a destination for shipping services and we are very excited for the future.

“Our job is to recreate Greek shipyards that were in decline for decades. That is ‘Phase I’ in our plans. We started from Neorion in Syros and we continue with Elefsina.

“Neorion was a game-changer in the industry. We are very proud for our Shipyards’ workers, technicians, engineers and experts who are working hard and smart to make our Shipyards the first choice of excellence to global ship-owners.”