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Navios Maritime Partners to buy Rickmers' entire fleet for US$113m

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Navios Maritime Partners L P (Navios Partners) has thrown distressed Singapore-listed trust Rickmers Maritime a lifeline by agreeing to buy its entire fleet in a US$113 million deal.

NAVIOS Maritime Partners L P (Navios Partners) has thrown distressed Singapore-listed trust Rickmers Maritime a lifeline by agreeing to buy its entire fleet in a US$113 million deal.

The trust had entered into a master agreement on Thursday with Navios Partners Containers Inc and Navios Partners Containers Finance Inc for the conditional sale of its entire fleet of 14 containerships, the company said in a filing to the Singapore Exchange on Friday morning. Navios Partners Containers and Navios Partners Containers Finance are units of Navios Partners, an international owner and operator of drybulk and container vessels. The trust manager also said that it has applied to delist the trust from the Singapore Exchange.

The agreement comes just a week after the manager said that it would wind up the trust as it failed to find new investors to pump in new equity.

The vessels in the agreement are currently under certain senior secured loan facilities extended to the trust for US$113 million. Subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions, the sale of the vessels is expected to be completed on and from May 15.

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Should the sale occur, proceeds will be applied towards the full repayment of the abovementioned senior secured loan facilities. The remainder will be distributed to the trust's unsecured creditors and used for expenses permitted under the Business Trusts Act and the trust deed.

However, there is no certainty or assurance as at the date of this announcement that the proposed sale will be completed, Rickmers stressed.

Navios Partners said that it will finance the acquisition through a US$20 million equity investment and a secured loan facility under discussion. The vessels are expected to be delivered starting May 15.

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