SOURCE: USS Products Investor LLC

May 15, 2008 08:30 ET

U.S. Shipping Partners' Joint Venture for Product Tanker Construction Provides Update on Operations

EDISON, NJ--(Marketwire - May 15, 2008) - USS Products Investor LLC (the "Joint Venture"), a joint venture formed and financed by affiliates of The Blackstone Group, other investors and U.S. Shipping Partners L.P. (NYSE: USS) to finance the construction of five 49,000 deadweight ton double-hulled product tankers by National Steel and Shipbuilding Company ("NASSCO"), confirmed today that the $500 million of financing committed by the parties remains in place. The Joint Venture has obtained charters for four of these five vessels and is actively pursuing additional charters. Construction is currently on time and on budget. NASSCO is currently scheduled to deliver the first tanker in the second quarter of 2009, the second tanker later in 2009, two tankers in 2010 and one tanker in 2011. In addition, the Joint Venture has the option to obtain U.S. Shipping Partners' rights to have NASSCO construct an additional four tankers.

The Joint Venture, which is 60% owned by affiliates of The Blackstone Group and other investors, and managed and 40% owned by U.S. Shipping Partners, has $500 million of committed debt and equity financing, including $430 million of committed debt and equity financing from affiliates of The Blackstone Group and other third party investors, and $70 million of equity from U.S. Shipping Partners that is already funded and secured by a letter of credit. The Joint Venture's business operations and the construction of the five product tankers is continuing as planned.

Contact Information

  • Contact Information:
    Albert Bergeron
    Chief Financial Officer
    USS Products Investor LLC