HFW advises on shipping industry’s first sustainable fund launch


Global, sector-focused law firm HFW advised on the launch of the shipping industry’s first sustainable fund.

The fund, named Low Emission Methanol Shipping Company (LEMSCO), was launched by maritime investment advisor ProMarine AG with an initial portfolio of four methanol-fuelled MR tankers, which were acquired from Proman and Stena Bulk.

It is backed by equity investors and is also financed by a green loan from ABN AMRO.

As part of the deal, LEMSCO will benefit from a dedicated supply contract from Proman – one of the world’s largest methanol producers – ensuring that the fleet’s operations are not only cost-effective but also powered by a technology-proven and globally available low-emission alternative fuel.

HFW advised the fund and also supported Proman and Stena Bulk on the transaction.

The HFW team was led by Gudmund Bernitz and Katherine Noble, who advised on the finance, shipping, and fuel-supply aspects, supported by HFW’s Owen Webb and Andrzej Czernis. HFW’s Alex Kyriakoulis, Audrey Hsieh, and Grace Serena-Heaton advised on corporate aspects; Anthony Woolich advised on IP aspects; and Adam Topping advised on regulatory matters.

Gudmund Bernitz, Partner and Shipping Sustainability Ambassador, HFW: “Having collaborated on this huge project for over two years, we are very proud to have enabled this landmark transaction which marks a big leap towards the decarbonisation of shipping.”

HFW’s market-leading global shipping practice comprises more than 200 shipping lawyers and 13 Master Mariners throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific, specialising in dry shipping, admiralty and crisis management, and transactional work for clients across the industry.

HFW has more top-tier rankings for shipping in legal directories Chambers and The Legal 500 than any other law firm.