As of April 1, 2021, Damen Shipyards Group will start a specialized Financial Services division to support clients in the financing of new ships by means of both operational and financial lease constructions.

In itself it is not new that Damen assists its clients in attracting financing for new ships. This has been happening for 30 years, the company said. “However, the demand for lease solutions is increasing,” explained Jan Willem van Helden, managing director of Damen Financial Services. “By making it a separate entity within the group, we can work with external investors, banks and specialists to optimize our offering on both a large and a smaller scale, with ships and services as one package.”

Damen said its customers can treat their capital investment as operational costs (OPEX). For Damen, the extra service means that a broader package, including maintenance, is offered, so that, for example, better management can be done towards a more sustainable use of the ships. Jan Willem van Helden said, “Ship-as-a-Service and circularity in shipbuilding come a step closer. 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,” Jan Willem van Helden said. “In the new set-up, the operating structure and financial framework are created first, after which customers are approached to purchase ships. This generally include a long term, low risk element such as a concession or charter contract.”

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

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