The world’s last surviving single-hull VLCC is set to make its final voyage to the breakers, market sources said this week.
SBM is said to have sold the 265,000-dwt Alba (built 1989) “as is” in Labuan, Malaysia.
Market experts are placing a price in the region of $10m on the vessel, which has been at anchor at the famous layup spot since June 2011.
SBM purchased the ship as Albatross from Greek owner Dynacom in a $25m deal in April 2011, with the tanker slated for conversion into a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) unit.
The scrap sale comes just a week after market speculation suggested the Alba, which was built by Hyundai Heavy Industries, was set for a final lease of life.
Potential storage deal
Rumours were linking the vessel with a trading sale, with a view to securing a storage contract as traders exploiting contango in the oil price fixed a flurry of VLCCs.
Storage has already offered a stay of execution to one VLCC this year, with Global Marketing Systems (GMS) fixing out the double-hull, 297,000-dwt Progress (ex-New Progress, built 1994) on a 12-month storage contract last month.
That pact, described by tanker-market sources as a “great deal” for GMS, was priced at $36,000 per day. The cash buyer had bought the tanker from Greek owner New Shipping last October in a scrap sale.
According to data from EA Gibson, the previous single-hull VLCC to be scrapped was the 282,000-dwt Southernpec 3 (built 1991). TradeWinds reported that the vessel fetched $6.8m in March last year.
The last single-hull VLCC sold for conversion, according to Gibsons, was the 284,497-dwt Front Lady, which today works as the offshore unit Petrobras 77.