Taylor Maritime Investments (TMI) is eyeing a move towards longer bulk carrier charters as it anticipates a rate boost after the Chinese New Year holiday early next month. The London-listed owner has just taken delivery of two more geared ships bought in 2021, one supramax and one handysize. These have been fixed on short-term period deals of less than six months at average unlevered gross cash yields of more than 20%.

Chief executive Edward Buttery said: “In the short term, we are pleased to have locked in such attractive yields for these newly delivered vessels. However, we expect the market to firm after Chinese New Year and will consider longer-term charters at that point as part of the strategic balancing between pricing and contract longevity.”

In December, TMI became the biggest investor in Singapore bulker rival Grindrod Shipping after selling its first ships. It spent $77.9m on a 22.6% stake acquired from a wholly owned subsidiary of Grindrod’s largest shareholder, Remgro. The deal was partly funded through the sale of two Chinese-built vessels for a combined $42.8m — an internal rate of return of 100%. Cash and an existing debt facility will also be used. One of the sold units, a Chinese-built handysize, has now been delivered, with the second due to leave the fleet in the first quarter. Tomini Shipping of the United Arab Emirates is the buyer.

TMI, which listed in London last May, currently has 30 ships, with a final purchased bulker due to join the fleet early next month.