Taylor Maritime Investments (TMI) expects the buoyant bulker market to last another two to three years. Continued strength in its main handysize niche will be supported by the favorable combination of slowing fleet growth, healthy demand for commodities, likely slower operating speeds for the global fleet and muted ship ordering arising from evolving emissions regulations. This should also boost secondhand vessel values.

TMI carried out an initial public offering in London in May, raising $254m, and then a capital raise of $75m in July. Net asset value has risen from $249m in May to $458m on 30 September. “This was driven by attractive vessel acquisitions that have strongly appreciated in value during the period,” the shipowner said. The fleet of 32 vessels, including two Supras, is worth $535m.

The average net time charter rate was $17,000 per day on 30 September, with an average duration of eight months. In the six months to 30 September, operating profit was $22m, while profit before tax was $127m, with demand and rates at the highest levels in a decade. The company’s first quarterly dividend for July to September is $0.175 per share. There is scope to pay an extraordinary dividend if the strong market persists, TMI said.

Chairman Nicholas Lykiardopulo said: “As a specialist owner of handysize vessels, the workhorses of the dry bulk shipping trade transporting necessity goods around the world, TMI has made a strong start as a listed company, delivering on its investment thesis by growing the fleet at attractive prices. TMI has built a strong foundation since IPO, with an excellent fleet and highly cash generative charters which will allow us to deliver predictable long-term income to shareholders,” he added.

Chief executive Ed Buttery said the first six months had been formative and dynamic for the company. He added the IPO proceeds were efficiently deployed through “new vessel acquisitions, successful chartering balancing attractive rates and visibility, and a strong investment position marrying agility with financial discipline“.