SOURCE: Euroseas

May 19, 2008 08:45 ET

Euroseas Ltd. Announces Agreement to Purchase a Container Ship Extending Fleet to 16 Vessels and Declares Quarterly Dividend of $0.31 Per Common Share

MAROUSSI, ATHENS, GREECE--(Marketwire - May 19, 2008) - Euroseas Ltd. (NASDAQ: ESEA), an owner and operator of drybulk carriers and container vessels and provider of seaborne transportation for dry bulk and containerized cargoes, announced today that its Board of Directors has declared a dividend of $0.31 per common share for the first quarter of 2008. The dividend is payable on June 18, 2008 to all shareholders of record as of June 06, 2008. This dividend is $0.01 above the previous quarterly dividend and $0.07 above the dividend paid for the same period last year.

The Company also announced that it has signed a memorandum of agreement to purchase the M/V Maersk Noumea, an intermediate container ship of 34,677 dwt and 2,556 twenty foot equivalent units (teu) built in 2001 in South Korea. The M/V Maersk Noumea was acquired for $43.5 million and comes with a period charter attached with a major container liner company at $16,800 per day until August 2011 with charterer's options to extend the charter for three additional years at $18,735, $19,240 and $19,750 per day, respectively. The vessel is expected to be delivered to the Company's fleet around May 21, 2008.

Following this acquisition, 100% of Euroseas' total containership fleet days in 2008, and about 47% for 2009, are fixed under period charters. Overall, including the Company's dry bulk fleet, about 92% of the total fleet days in 2008 and about 34% in 2009 are covered under period charters, already concluded spot charters, or otherwise protected from market fluctuations.

Furthermore, the Company announced that it filed its 2007 Annual Report on Form 20-F with the Securities and Exchange Commission on May 12, 2008. The Form 20-F is available free of charge on our web site (www.euroseas.gr). Additionally, shareholders can request a hard copy of our complete audited consolidated financial statements free of charge.

Aristides Pittas, Chairman and CEO of Euroseas, commented: "We are delighted to announce the acquisition of our sixteenth vessel continuing our strategy to grow our fleet with accretive acquisitions. We note that whilst the charter rate may seem low compared to the current charter market it is reflective of the fact that the price paid is also significantly lower than the current charter free price. In addition, this acquisition and the period employment contract further strengthen our relationship with the world's biggest container liner company.

"Our investment and employment strategy, thus far, has allowed us to pay growing dividends to our shareholders as evidenced by the dividend of $0.31 per share that we declared for the results of the first three months of 2008. This dividend represents a 3.3% increase over the dividend of the previous quarter and 29.2% increase over the dividend we declared for the same quarter last year. This dividend continues our policy of paying significant dividends which however represent only a fraction of our net income and free cash flow. Our focus remains to continue growing our fleet and providing superior risk-adjusted returns to our shareholders."

After the delivery of M/V MAERSK NOUMEA, the Euroseas Ltd. fleet profile is as follows:


                                              Year                TCERate
Name                  Type       Dwt    TEU   Built Employment    ($/day)
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------

Dry Bulk Vessels
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                      Baumarine    Spot/
                                                    Pool - ‘til    Partly
IRINI (*)              Panamax  69,734         1988    end 2008    fixed
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
ARISTIDES N.P.         Panamax  69,268         1993      Jan-09  $   52,000
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
IOANNA P.              Panamax  64,873         1984      Aug-08  $   35,500
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
NIKOLAOS P.          Handysize  34,750         1984      Sep-08  $   36,000
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------

GREGOS               Handysize  38,691         1984        Spot  $   44,750
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
Total Dry Bulk
 Vessels                     5 277,316
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------

                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------


Multipurpose Dry
 Cargo Vessels
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                                  $ 8,850
                                                                    ‘til
                                                                   Dec-08,
                                                                  $ 9,500
                                                                    ‘til
                                                                   Dec-10,
                                                                  $ 9,000
                                                        TC ‘til     ‘til
TASMAN TRADER                1  22,568    950  1990      Mar-12    Mar-12
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
Container
 Carriers
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                                  $ 16,800
                                                                    ‘til
                                                                   Aug 11
                                                                  $ 18,735
                                                                    ‘til
                                                                   Aug 12
                                                        TC ‘til   $ 19,240
                                                         Aug-11     ‘til
                                                      (3 yearly    Aug 13
                                                        options   $ 19,750
                                                           ’til     ‘til
MAERSK NOUMEA     Intermediate  34,677  2,556  2001      Aug-14)   Aug 14
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
TIGER BRIDGE      Intermediate  31,627  2,228  1990      Jul-09  $   16,500
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
ARTEMIS           Intermediate  29,693  2,098  1987      Dec-08  $   19,000
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
DESPINA P           Handy size  33,667  1,932  1990      Feb-09  $   15,250
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
OEL INTEGRITY       Handy size  33,667  1,932  1990      May-09  $   16,500
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
OEL TRANSWORLD      Handy size  30,007  1,742  1992  Sep/Nov 09  $   18,500
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
YM XINGANG I        Handy size  23,596  1,599  1993      Jul-09  $   26,650
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
MANOLIS P           Handy size  20,346  1,452  1995      Nov-09  $   15,800
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                                  $ 12,800
                                                                    ‘til
                                                                   Apr-08
                                                                  $ 13,175
NINOS                                                   TC ‘til     ‘til
 (ex-YM QINGDAOI)       Feeder  18,253  1,169  1990      Apr-09    Apr-09
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
                                                        TC ‘til
KUO HSIUNG              Feeder  18,154  1,169  1993      Feb-09  $   15,800
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
Total Container
 Carriers                   10 273,687 17,787
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------
Fleet Grand Total           16 573,571 18,827
                  ------------ ------- ------ ----- -----------  ----------

(*) "IRINI" is employed in the Baumarine pool that is managed by Klaveness, a major global charterer in the dry bulk area, and also participates in "short" funds (contracts to carry cargo at agreed rates), reducing its exposure to the spot market.

About Euroseas Ltd.

Euroseas Ltd. was formed on May 5, 2005 under the laws of the Republic of the Marshall Islands to consolidate the ship owning interests of the Pittas family of Athens, Greece, which has been in the shipping business over the past 136 years. Euroseas trades on the NASDAQ Global Market under the ticker ESEA.

Euroseas operates in the dry cargo, drybulk and container shipping markets. Euroseas' operations are managed by Eurobulk Ltd., an ISO 9001:2000 certified affiliated ship management company, which is responsible for the day-to-day commercial and technical management and operations of the vessels. Euroseas employs its vessels on spot and period charters and through pool arrangements.

The Company has a fleet of 16 vessels, including 3 Panamax drybulk carriers, 2 Handysize drybulk carriers, 3 Intermediate container ship, 5 Handysize container ships, 2 Feeder container ships and a multipurpose dry cargo vessel. Euroseas' 5 drybulk carriers have a total cargo capacity of 277,316 dwt, its 10 container ships have a cargo capacity of 17,787 teu and its 1 multipurpose vessel has a cargo capacity of 22,568 dwt or 950 teu.

Forward-Looking Statement

This press release contains forward-looking statements (as defined in Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended) concerning future events and the Company's growth strategy and measures to implement such strategy; including expected vessel acquisitions and entering into further time charters. Words such as "expects," "intends," "plans," "believes," "anticipates," "hopes," "estimates," and variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, no assurance can be given that such expectations will prove to have been correct. These statements involve known and unknown risks and are based upon a number of assumptions and estimates that are inherently subject to significant uncertainties and contingencies, many of which are beyond the control of the Company. Actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, but are not limited to changes in the demand for dry bulk vessels, competitive factors in the market in which the Company operates; risks associated with operations outside the United States; and other factors listed from time to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company expressly disclaims any obligations or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in the Company's expectations with respect thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any statement is based.

Contact Information

  • Contact:

    Visit our website www.euroseas.gr

    Company Contact
    Tasos Aslidis
    Chief Financial Officer
    Euroseas Ltd.
    11 Canterbury Lane
    Watchung, NJ 07069
    Tel. (908) 301-9091
    E-mail: aha@euroseas.gr

    Investor Relations / Financial Media
    Nicolas Bornozis
    President
    Capital Link, Inc.
    230 Park Avenue, Suite 1536
    New York, NY 10169
    Tel. (212) 661-7566
    E-mail: nbornozis@capitallink.com