CIT Maritime Finance Provides $61.8 Mln to PE-Backed Sterling Ocean Shipping

Sterling Ocean Shipping, a portfolio company of Alterna Capital Partners, has received a $61.8 credit facility from CIT Maritime Finance. The loan is to support Sterling Ocean Shipping’s acquisition of three tankers from STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co. CIT Bank, the U.S. commercial bank subsidiary of CIT, provided the financing while CIT Maritime Finance arranged the transaction.


NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–CIT Group Inc. (NYSE: CIT), a global leader in transportation finance, today announced that CIT Maritime Finance provided a $61.8 million senior secured credit facility to a portfolio company of Alterna Capital Partners, a private equity firm based in Wilton, CT, to finance the acquisition of three 50,000 DWT ECO-design Medium Range (MR) IMO II/III product/chemical tankers from STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. The tankers are owned by Sterling Ocean Shipping, which is majority owned and controlled by Alterna, with technical management provided by Fleet Management Limited. All three vessels have been placed under long-term time charters with Stena Weco, a leading shipper of petroleum products, edible oils and easy chemicals. The Sterling MR tankers represent the first in a series of STX next-generation ECO MR tanker designs.
CIT Maritime Finance structured and facilitated the transaction, while financing was provided by CIT Bank, the U.S. commercial bank subsidiary of CIT. The transaction has a five-year term; additional terms were not disclosed. This transaction represents CIT’s third transaction with Alterna; the first two involved financing a portion of the construction cost and, later, of the delivered cost of the American Phoenix, a US-flagged Jones Act-qualified chemical tanker.
“We are proud to provide Alterna with this financing and further expand our loan portfolio in the maritime industry,” said Svein Engh, Managing Director and Group Head of CIT Maritime Finance. “This is our third transaction with Alterna, which further highlights our expertise in the sector and our continued commitment to support our clients’ growth initiatives.”
Eric Press, Managing Partner of Alterna Capital Partners said, “We are pleased to partner once again with CIT to finance these three ECO-ships. This is our third maritime finance transaction with CIT and its team has clearly demonstrated a deep expertise in the industry.”
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About Alterna Capital Partners
Alterna Capital Partners is a private equity group with over $700 million of committed capital dedicated to ownership of “Core Capital Assets”, long-lived, income-producing assets that are vital to productive operations of companies in the transportation, industrial, and energy sectors. Collectively, the Alterna Capital Partners team has over 100 years of relevant industry experience, having successfully invested more than $2 billion in Core Capital Assets.
About CIT Maritime Finance
CIT Maritime Finance offers senior secured loans, sale-leasebacks, and bareboat charters to owners and operators of oceangoing cargo vessels including tankers, bulkers, container ships, car carriers, as well as offshore vessels and drilling rigs.
About CIT Bank
Founded in 2000, CIT Bank (Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender) is the U.S. commercial bank subsidiary of CIT Group Inc. (NYSE: CIT). It provides lending and leasing to the small business, middle market and rail sectors. Through its online bank,, CIT Bank offers a suite of savings options designed to help customers achieve a range of financial goals. As of June 30, 2013, it had $11.1 billion of deposits and $13.9 billion of assets.
About CIT
Founded in 1908, CIT (NYSE: CIT) is a bank holding company with more than $35 billion in financing and leasing assets. It provides financing and leasing capital and advisory services to its clients and their customers across more than 30 industries. CIT maintains leadership positions in small business and middle market lending, factoring, retail finance, aerospace, equipment and rail leasing, and vendor finance. CIT also operates CIT Bank (Member FDIC), its primary bank subsidiary, which, through its online bank, offers a suite of savings options designed to help customers achieve a range of financial goals.