Danish ferry and logistics company DFDS has entered into an agreement with the Italian ferry company Moby to acquire the two ro-pax ferries, Moby Wonder and Moby Aki, in exchange for DFDS’ vessels King Seaways and Princess Seaways.

The company decided to purchase the ships in order to expand capacity on the Amsterdam-Newcastle route.

“The new ferries are ideally suited for our Amsterdam-Newcastle route. Their modern onboard facilities and higher car-deck capacity will allow us to grow revenue by fulfilling the growing demand from high-yield car passengers. To freight customers, we will be able to offer increased capacity that can remain constant throughout the year”, said Peder Gellert Pedersen, EVP and Head of DFDS’ Ferry Division.

The deal is expected to be completed in the second half of October 2019. DFDS will subsequently bareboat-charter King Seaways and Princess Seaways from Moby until January and February 2020, respectively.

Meanwhile, the acquired ferries from Moby will be refurbished to suit the Amsterdam-Newcastle route. This includes commercial and technical investments on board as well as port investments. The refurbished ferries are expected to be deployed on Amsterdam-Newcastle during the first quarter of 2020.

The expected completion in October 2019 of the sale of the two ferries is estimated to entail an accounting profit of around DKK 100 million (USD 14.77 million) to be recognised in the fourth quarter of 2019. The full-year outlook for special items is thus increased to DKK 70 million from previously DKK -30 million, DFDS explained.

The investment in the renewal, including proceeds from the sale of Princess Seaways and King Seaways, is expected to amount to around DKK 1 billion of which DKK 650 million is expected to be paid in 2019. The remaining DKK 350 million is expected to be paid in 2020. The investment includes a substantial investment in refurbishment.

The investment outlook for 2019 is therefore changed to around DKK 3.4 billion from previously DKK 2.8 billion.