Damen launches financial services division

Damen Shipyards Group is starting a specialised financial services division, from 1 April 2021. It says this unit will support its clients in financing new ships by means of both operational and financial lease constructions.

Damen has assisted its clients in attracting financing for new ships for thirty years.

“However, the demand for lease solutions is increasing,” says Jan Willem van Helden, MD of Damen Financial Services. “By making it a separate entity within the group, we can work with external investors, banks and specialists to optimise our offering on both a large and a smaller scale, with ships and services as one package.”

The advantage, says Damen, is that customers can treat their capital investment as operational costs (OPEX). For Damen, the extra service means that a broader package is offered, so that, for example, better management can be done towards a more sustainable use of the ships.

“Ship-as-a-service and circularity in shipbuilding come a step closer,” says van Helden. “Moreover, the new service means that, from a governance perspective, we have a better overview of how the financing works.”

The working method of the new division opens the way to new business models for Damen Shipyards Group.

“In the past, we would first sell a ship and then support our customer with the financing structure. In the new set-up, the operating structure and financial framework are created first, after which customers are approached to purchase ships. This generally includes a long term, low risk element such as a concession or charter contract.”

Damen expects to be able to announce the first tangible projects of the new division shortly.

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