Crowley to buy, charter back SeaRiver Maritime tankers

Crowley Alaska Tankers, LLC, has an agreement to purchase three tankers from SeaRiver Maritime Inc., a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil, and charter them back to SeaRiver under varying multi-year terms.

The acquisition announced Wednesday, subject to regulatory review, will include the 820’, 115,000 dwt tankers Liberty Bay and Eagle Bay, each of which have a capacity of 800,000 bbl. and transport crude from Alaska to West Coast refineries. The third ship is the 576’, 46,100 dwt tanker SR American Progress, with capacity of 342,000 bbl., transporting refined petroleum between U.S. Gulf and East Coast ports.

“We are proud of the SeaRiver acquisition and will operate these tankers with our relentless pursuit of quality and safety,” Tom Crowley, chairman and CEO of parent company Crowley Maritime Corp., said in announcing the pending purchase. “We were selected as the company who could deliver, and we are committed to doing just that – by operating these assets in the safest, most reliable manner.”

Crowley already operates the largest U.S. flag petroleum and chemical tank vessel fleet in the country, and by the end of 2017 will have 37 Jones Act qualified large petroleum transportation vessels in the United States with a combined capacity of more than 10 million barrels. Among this tank vessel fleet are a tanker and an articulated-tug-barge (ATB) already on charter to SeaRiver.

“We anticipate a smooth transition with SeaRiver crews, and look forward to personally welcoming them to the Crowley team,” said Rudy Leming, Crowley vice president of labor relations. “We know they share our values – safety, integrity and high performance – and will work diligently with us to uphold them as we serve SeaRiver’s needs.”

Crowley must obtain necessary regulatory approvals to serve the Alaska and West Coast markets, and company officials said they will “work together with regulators to ensure a seamless transition and continued safe operations.”

“We have an excellent safety record, which we intend to uphold,” said Rob Grune, Crowley senior vice president and general manager, petroleum services. Last year the company transported 410 million bbl. and made 4,868 product transfers with zero spills to environment, said Grune.

Crowley has operated in Alaska since 1953, six years before statehood, providing upstream energy support services, tanker assist and escort services with tugboats, and petroleum transportation, distribution and sales throughout the state. In addition to the company’s own ATBs calling in Alaska, the company currently manages and crews tankers carrying petroleum between Alaska and the U.S. West Coast.

Crowley owns and/or operates a diverse, sophisticated fleet of double-hull tank vessels, including 17 ATBs and 19 tankers, all built since 2002. One additional tanker will join Crowley’s managed fleet in 2017.

SeaRiver Maritime, Inc., headquartered in Spring, Texas, is a privately held subsidiary wholly owned by ExxonMobil that provides a wide range of technical and commercial marine services to ExxonMobil affiliates throughout the world.

Crowley Alaska Tankers is a new subsidiary of Crowley Petroleum Holdings LLC, part of the Crowley Maritime Corporation family of companies.


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