Nordic American Tanker Shipping Limited (the "Company") today announced an underwritten public offering of 4,000,000 common shares.
Nordic American Tanker Shipping Limited (the "Company") today announced an underwritten public offering of 4,000,000 common shares. The common shares are being offered pursuant to the Company's effective shelf registration statement. The proceeds of the offering are expected to be used to fund future acquisitions and for general corporate purposes.
As of January 20, 2010, the Company owned or agreed to acquire 18 modern double-hull Suezmax tankers, including one secondhand vessel that we have agreed to acquire and expect to take delivery of no later than March 1, 2010 and two newbuildings that we expect to take delivery of in 2010. The proceeds of the offering announced today, together with other financing sources available to the Company, are expected to enable the Company to make accretive acquisitions, based on present asset prices, of at least four additional vessels.
Morgan Stanley is acting as the bookrunning manager for the offering and DnB NOR Markets, Inc. is acting as co-manager of the offering. The Company has granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to 600,000 additional shares to cover over-allotments.
The common shares purchased by the underwriters are expected to be offered for resale from time to time in negotiated transactions or otherwise, at market prices on the New York Stock Exchange prevailing at the time of sale, at prices related to such prevailing market prices or otherwise. On January 20, 2010, the closing price of the Company's common shares on the New York Stock Exchange was $33.74per share.
The Company also announced that it expects its dividend per share in respect of the fourth quarter of 2009 to be in the region of $0.23 per share compared to a dividend of $0.10 per share for the the third quarter of 2009. This estimate is based on fourth quarter 2009 charter rates for the Company's vessels and estimated levels of operating costs. The estimated dividend per share in respect of the fourth quarter of 2009 is calculated based on a weighted average of 42,204,904 common shares outstanding during the fourth quarter of 2009. The Company expects to pay the same dividend per share in respect of the fourth quarter of 2009 for the shares sold in this offering.
Please see "Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward Looking Statements" for additional assumptions on which these estimates are based.
The average spot market rate for modern Suezmax tankers as reported by IMAREX was $13,012 per day in the third quarter of 2009 and was $23,682 per day during the fourth quarter of 2009. Generally, there is a certain time lag between the actual rates earned by the Company's vessels and those rates quoted by IMAREX. The average spot market rates so far in 2010 are well above the rates for the fourth quarter of 2009.