Dubai marine firm Stanford continues turnaround with $45m from National Bank of Fujairah

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National Bank of Fujairah $45 million will help Stanford Marine tap opportunities in offshore support services. The financing is for a near 5-year term. Image Credit: Gulf News

Dubai: The Dubai based Stanford Marine Group has charted further progress in its turnaround plan, by securing $45 million from National Bank of Fujairah. The marine company has also brought in a new board of directors.

These follow early this year’s rescue act by Shuaa Capital, which acquired the Dh1.13 billion that Stanford was burdened with. The new bank financing is structured as a bilateral facility for a period of around five years. It will be used to support Stanford’s expansion possibilities in the offshore support vessel sector as well as “optimize capital structure”.

Shuaa’s debt buyout

In January, Shuaa completed a discounted debt buyout of Stanford Marine Group’s Dh1.13 billion debt, resulting in a successful outcome for all parties involved, including the participating banks.

This strengthened SMG’s liquidity position and helped all lenders exit with a cash recovery.

Following the debt buyout, SMG was “significantly deleveraged with a strong balance sheet and a right-sized business poised for growth”.

The restructuring transaction also helped retain more than 1,800 jobs and nearly $20 million worth of annual exports of vessels (Made in UAE) manufactured at the Grandweld shipyard’s facility in Dubai Maritime City.

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Stanford Marine Group is inching closer to turning itself around. Image Credit: Supplied

“We understand SMG’s business model and recognize the company’s potential to support the UAE’s ambitions to become a shipping hub in the region,” said Vince Cook, CEO of National Bank of Fujairah. This transaction is a testament to the strong relationship we have with both SMG and SHUAA and aligns with our strong focus on the shipping and offshore support vessel sector.”

New Board

Of the new board of directors, Saeed Al Hajeri is Chairman while Dr. Saleh Al Hashemi, Oliver Zoeger and Ajit Joshi are the others who have signed up. Al Hajeri is currently Vice-Chairman of Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) and Executive Director at Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA).