Varun Shipping seeks new licence after business rejig

Tags: News

Offshore, tankers & LPG business now under three subsidiaries

Varun Shipping Company (VSCL), which is undergoing a severe financial crisis, has sought a fresh operating licence following the recast of the company into three companies.

Yudhishthir Khatau, chairman and managing director of VSCL, told Financial Chronicle that Varun Global, the ship management company that will take care of all ships under its three group companies, has already applied for an interim document of compliance (DoC) from the maritime regulator, the directorate general of shipping (DG Shipping) for managing the Indian flagged vessels.

“Varun Shipping Company has voluntarily given up the DoC and we are now awaiting the nod for interim DoC from the DG Shipping,” said Khatau.

In November 2013, the DG Shipping had issued a show-cause notice asking Varun Shipping why its licence should not be withdrawn amid its inability to dry dock the ships and pay the crew for several months.

“DG Shipping subsequently withdrew the operating license for Varun Shipping last week on company’s request and the company is awaiting the DoC for the new company,” said Khatau.

The company has recast its offshore, tankers and LPG business now under three different subsidiaries -— Cyprus-based Varun Cyprus for anchor handling and towing supply vessels, Singapore-based Varun Asia for Aframax vessels, and Varun Gas for their LPG vessels. “Varun Global will be the ship management entity of the group, based in Mumbai, focusing purely on ship management services for all the three sectors -- LPG, Aframax and offshore,” said Khatau.

“We have arranged the resources for the dry docking and repair of our LPG and Aframax tankers which are scheduled to be completed in the next quarter. It would facilitate 100 per cent utilisation of the tanker and LPG fleet in a viable manner,” said Khatau.

The company recently sold off two of its three very large gas vessels (VLGCs) and is looking to sell the third one too. It expects to reduce its total debt of Rs 1,000 crore by one third.

Regarding delayed crew salaries, Khatau said the payments are now as per schedule.

vikassrivastav

@mydigitalfc.com

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