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Raymond Ko

Raymond Ko - Marstrat

Marstrat appoints Raymond Ko as Managing Partner

Raymond Ko |

As of January 1st Raymond Ko is appointed Managing Partner of Marstrat. Raymond succeeds Martin Bloem, who was responsible for setting-up the company and the successful first years of operation. Martin steps down because of engagements in various commercial projects, amongst others the interim management role at Deal! Drecht Cities. Martin will stay on as Marstrat partner.

Bloem was Marstrat’s CEO from the start of the company in 2015 and created the foundation of the market position and brand Marstrat has today. He feels confident that Raymond will continue this success and lead the company into the next phase. Bloem explains: ‘Raymond has 18 years of experience as an all-round maritime financial expert. He enjoys respect and has a vast network in the maritime industry. This makes him the right man for the job. Exactly what Marstrat needs to keep delivering value to our clients.’

Raymond Ko was appointed Marstrat partner in September 2016. Previously he worked as a ship finance expert for international banks in the UK and the Netherlands, supporting the development of maritime companies in the Netherlands and internationally. Ko: ‘It is my goal to continue the growth of Marstrat and to explore new opportunities to help clients deal with difficulties that come with today’s reality. Our added value lies in the complementary areas of expertise, skills and networks of the Marstrat partners. Because of this we can act as a one-stop shop and are able to deliver cross-disciplinary services and solution to our clients.’

Marstrat
Marstrat is a strategic consultancy firm that provides a unique combination of technological, business, financial and legal expertise to the maritime sector. The company simplifies, organises and supports in order to solve cross-disciplinary maritime challenges. Marstrat’s partners speak the language of the industry and understand the international markets. They operate at senior managerial level, have extensive experience, and an undisputed track record in the maritime sector.

MARSTRAT cargo harbour

Funding issues of Ballast Water Treatment systems

Raymond Ko |

Raymond Ko - Marstrat - Ship FinanceOn December 8 the Royal Association of Dutch Shipowners (KVNR) organised a seminar in Amersfoort (NL) on issues connected with the recently ratified international ballast water convention. Marstrat’s financial specialist Raymond Ko was asked to share his vision on funding issues connected with installing Ballast Water Treatment systems into existing ships. Other topics included legislative and operational impact of the convention, that come into force in September 2017.

Some 90 shipowners and associated KVNR members attended the session and held good discussions on regulations and technical solutions that are available. Installation of such solutions on an existing vessel is a huge investment, ranging from $  300,000 for small ships to $ 1,000,000 plus for large ships. A substantial investment, especially now that liquidity is under pressure due to continuing challenging economic times for shipowners. It is expected that most owners, especially smaller and medium-sized companies are going to bring forward special surveys before September 8, 2017. By doing so the vessels are compliant until the next obligatory class survey. In other words, it postpones investments and keeps them in the clear for another five years.

Raymond proposed shipowners to actively deal with this challenge instead of pushing decisions forward. They should engage and involve multiple parties like shipyards, suppliers and banks. “From a credit perspective banks might not see valid reasons to leverage further on a vessel, especially in this market, they have clear interest in their security vessels being compliant and therefore marketable.” Raymond explains. Additionally banks have an interest to support sustainable shipping. A combination of funding can be a solution when coordinated well: bank facility increase, seller’s credit and owners funds. Subsidies and guarantee schemes (such as EIB) were discussed as well but have proven challenging in the past given availability and size, even for the stronger owners.

Please contact Raymond Ko if you would like to share thoughts or seek advise.

 

 

Raymond Ko - Marstrat

Marstrat welcomes Raymond Ko

Raymond Ko |

Marstrat introduces ship finance specialist Raymond Ko as new partner. Trained as a shipping financier, Raymond has supported the development of many shipping companies in Western Europe, but also in Greece, the Middle East and Russia by structuring loans to clients’ needs and capabilities and advising on corporate finance and capital raisings. More recently he managed a sizable equity portfolio of non-public shipping investments on behalf of a large Dutch bank.

With 18 years of maritime financial services and investment experience Marstrat is very happy Raymond joined the team and will contribute to build-up Marstrat’s capabilities towards clients. Raymond: “I aim to help companies improve and grow their business by strengthening or establishing relationships with for example providers of funding and use my network to develop or execute new ideas.”

CEO Martin Bloem: “Within Marstrat we share the passion for everything that floats. We bring the various disciplines together and we are sure Raymond’s experiences as shipping banker and having learned from highly volatile markets and crises adds true value to the team.

Raymond: “Now looking as an outsider to the banking industry whilst working with maritime entrepreneurs, I experience how the sector distrusts banks. It will take a long time to regain that trust and I believe both banker and ship-owner should invest more time to understand each other. I am sure this will open up the support for well thought proposals, whether for growth, complex restructurings or innovative projects.

The Marstrat team is keen to help you to take important steps for the future.