By | 2021 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

Latest News From The Maritime Continuity In Italy

Regarding the public tender launched for the subsidized Genova – Porto Torres link, both Tirrenia CIN and GNV had been excluded by the Italian transport ministry, while Grimaldi appealed to the Regional Administrative Court in Rome contesting some aspects of the procedure.

The tender will have to be relaunched, but the Onorato-controlled group has just announced that they (Moby and Tirrenia CIN) will operate the same line for the whole year with no need for public money.

On June 1, Grimaldi Euromed officially started the new Naples – Cagliari – Palermo link with ropax CORFU. This follows a public tender for the maritime continuity where Grimaldi Group emerged as the only interested player.

For Grimaldi Group this is the first line calling the port of Naples, in the city where the company is headquartered.

(CORFU completed her last sailing on Igoumenitsa – Ancona on May 30).

On the route Naples – Cagliari Moby – Cin will also be active with a new regular ro-ro cargo line.

FRS To Offer Inter-Balearic-Island Services

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Competition on the Balearic Islands increases. Two days after the announcement of GNV to enter this market, the German company FRS said it will start operating the Alcúdia – Cituadella route at the end of May.

At the beginning of June, the Ibiza-Formentera line will be added.

The FRS routes will be operated by fast ferries:

TARIFA JET on Alcudia – Ciutadela / 1h15min / 777 pax / 175 cars

SAN GWANN on Ibiza – Formentera / 427 pax / 15 cars

Grandi Navi Veloci Acquired PRIDE OF YORK and PRIDE OF BRUGES

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MSC-controlled ferry company Grandi Navi Veloci S.p.A.is emerging as the new owner of the 1976-built ferries PRIDE OF YORK and PRIDE OF BRUGES.

Up to now owned by P&O Ferries and previously deployed on Hull-Zeebrugge/Rotterdam, the funnels of both the vessels have been repainted and Italian crew members embarked.

To be confirmed: PRIDE OF YORK is to be renamed GNV ARIES while BRUGES will become GNV ANTARES.

GNV On Spain – Balearic Islands?

By | 2021 Newsletter week 9 | No Comments

Grandi Navi Veloci is expected to start running a double service from Spain mainland to the Balearic Islands from July 2.

Although the company did not make any official announcement yet, Spanish media report that the new lines will link the ports of Valencia and Barcelona with Ibiza and Palma de Mallorca.

Local port authorities confirmed that GNV asked for information, with the aim of launching new services coming summer.

The two ropax ferries which are likely to be deployed on the links are GNV BRIDGE and GNV SEALAND. Competitors are Trasmediterranea and Balearia.

GNV Successfully Chartered Out Accommodation Vessel for Quarantined Migrants

By | 2021 Newsletter week 5 | No Comments

Over the last 10 months the Italian transport ministry asked ferry companies for ropax units to be used as “floating quarantine hotels” for migrants arriving on the Italian coasts from North Africa.

Earlier this week the same ministry published an updated resume of the awarded contracts: GNV €34.5m and Moby €1m.

Some other ferry companies such as CIN, Forship and the Greek firm Galaxy Maritime S.A. submitted offers but were excluded or emerged as second best.

Grandi Navi Veloci Suspended the RoPax Link between Civitavecchia and Palermo

By | 2020 Newsletter week 43 | No Comments

GNV has suspended the ropax link between the ports of Civitavecchia and the Sicily island (i.e. ports of Palermo and Termini Imerese) after the ‘port of Rome’ increased port dues applied to roro and passenger traffics, embarked and disembarked.

The decision (which seems to be still reviewable) was taken by the port authority of Civitavecchia in order to balance the financial losses coming after the Covid emergency which cancelled all the cruise season and most of the ferry traffic this year.

The dockworkers company protested against the new increased port dues warning that several shipowners (Grandi Navi Veloci and Grimaldi for the news cars handling) are already thinking to move their ships to other ports in Italy.

The MSC-controlled ferry company will go on serving the line between Sicily and Central-Southern Italy through the port of Naples.

RoRo Operators and Dockers Fighting in Italy about Cargo Handling

By | 2020 Newsletter week 42 | No Comments

Tension and troubles are arising in several Italian ports as some roro operators are not respecting a law just approved by the Italian Parliament. This law says that lashing and unlashing of cargo onboard the ship can be done by crewmembers only where skilled dockers are not available in port. To be fully effective this new regulation needs final guidelines, still to be adapted by the local Transport ministry.

Dockers cite a need to improve safety and highlight that lashing is dockwork, and abuses must be sanctioned.

Grandi Navi Veloci, Grimaldi Lines and Caronte & Tourist are some of the ro-pax companies active in Italy pushing towards the possibility to make ro-ro self-handling on board their ships.

Italian shipowners’ associations Confitarma and Assarmatori anticipated their will to contest the coming into force of the law either in Italy or in Europe if necessary.

Private Equity funds Apollo and HPS injected USD 75 Million in Naviera Armas

By | 2020 Newsletter week 41 | No Comments

Spanish media reports that Naviera Armas has just received financial oxygen from two private equity funds, Apollo and HPS. They injected some USD 75 million in order to keep the ferry company alive in the rough seas of the coronavirus emergency.

Since the news went public both the EUR 280 and 300 million bonds issued respectively in 2016 and 2017 and due to expire in 2023 and 2024 decreased their values and are now negotiated in the range between 40 and 50% of the original value.

This new debt received from the funds comes after EUR 50 million provided by some Spanish banks earlier this year.

Last week Grandi Navi Veloci officially announced to have sub-chartered from Naviera Armas-controlled Trasmediterranea both ropaxes TENACIA and FORZA owned by Grimaldi Holding and deployed up to now on the Spain – Balearic Islands routes.