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Alpha Bulkers emerges as buyer of cape on Taobao

The second of a pair of capesizes auctioned on Alibaba-owned shopping site Taobao has gone to Greece-based Alpha Bulkers, it has been confirmed. As with the first sale, which took place in August, the vessel was bought at a healthy discount to market valuations

Anna Angelicoussi-led company adds to strong capesize fleet by winning Five Stars Beijing in Chinese website auction

ALPHA Bulkers has emerged as the buyer of an eight-year-old Sasebo-built capesize bulk carrier put up for sale on Taobao, the Chinese online shopping site.

The Hong Kong-flagged, 181,417 dwt Five Stars Beijing reportedly went for the reserve price of Yuan 158m ($23m).

The sale in August of the vessel’s sistership, Five Stars Fujian, on the same platform was a first for such a large vessel.

The first of the two capes was sold to Safe Bulkers for Yuan170.6m ($24.8m).

Although Five Stars Fujian was a year older than its sister vessel, the higher price reflected competition for the bulker, whereas Alpha Bulkers is believed to have been the sole registered bidder.

Both, though, seem as bargain acquisitions compared with estimates of their market value.

Online valuer VesselsValue puts a value of $27.6m on Five Stars Beijing.

The price can also be compared with a $29.3m amount agreed in another fresh Greek capesize acquisition, that of 182,674 dwt Frontier Coronet. The 2011-built bulker, also built in Japan, has been acquired by Unisea Shipping, according to industry sources.

Anna Angelicoussi-led Alpha Bulkers already has one of the largest dry bulk fleets in Greece. Before the latest acquisition it stood at 34 vessels, including 21 capes.

This year it has taken delivery of three kamsarmax newbuildings with one further kamsarmax in the series still to come from builder Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding.

Both of the auctioned capes had been detained at the behest of China’s Bank of Communications and auctioned through China’s maritime courts.

In both cases the broker acting for the successful buyer was Clarksons Platou Hellas, it is understood.

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