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Capital Product Partners LP (CPLP -1.40%)
Q4 2019 Earnings Call
Feb 5, 2020, 9:00 a.m. ET


  • Prepared Remarks
  • Questions and Answers
  • Call Participants

Prepared Remarks:


Thank you for standing by, and welcome to the Capital Product Partners' Fourth Quarter 2019 Financial Results Conference Call. We have with us, Mr. Jerry Kalogiratos, Chief Executive Officer of the Company.

[Operator Instructions] I must advise you this conference is being recorded today, 5th of February 2020. The statements in today's conference call that are not historical facts, including our expectations regarding cash generation and future debt levels, our ability to pursue growth opportunities, our expectations or objectives regarding future distribution amounts, capital reserve amounts, distribution coverage, future earnings as well as our expectations regarding market fundamentals, and the employment of our vessels including redelivery dates and charter rates, may be forward-looking statements, as such as defined in Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.

These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause the stated or forecasted results to be materially different from those anticipated. Unless required by law, we expressly disclaim any obligation to update or revise any of these forward-looking statements, whether because of future events, new information, a change in our views or expectations to conform to actual results or otherwise.

We assume no responsibility for the accuracy and completeness of the forward-looking statements. We make no prediction or statement about the performance of our common units.

I would now like to hand over to your speaker today, Mr. Kalogiratos. Please go ahead, sir.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

[Technical Issues] this earnings call by emphasizing the partnership's common unit distribution track record. CPLP has a 12 years history of paying significant quarterly distributions and that's returning value to its unit holders without ever having faced balance sheet issues and despite having to navigate multiple shipping cycles and the associated volatility in charter rates and asset values.

In particular, since the partnership's IPO in April 2007, CPLP has paid non-stop distributions to common and preferred unit holders for 51 consecutive quarters corresponding total payments of approximately $800 million. Adjusted for the recent reserve split, this translates into distributions of $82.10 per common unit between March 2007 and February 2020 and $6.05 per class B preferred units from August 2012 through March 2019 when we redeemed the class B preferred unit series at par.

Going forward, the partnership has increased its common unit distribution by approximately 11% and set a new quarterly distribution guidance of $0.35 per common unit compared to our previous distribution of $0.315 in view of the acquisition of the three Neo-Panamax containers and the partial refinancing of our 2017 credit facility.

While the acquisition of the three containers was completed in January 2020 and the refinancing is expected to be only completed later in the first quarter of 2020, the distribution increase becomes effective immediately for the fourth quarter 2019 distribution and the increased distribution will be paid on February 11th to common unit holder of record on February 3rd.

In addition, our common unit distribution coverage for the last four quarters has amounted to 1.7 times after setting aside the capital reserve determined by our Board. As discussed previously, our current annual capital reserve that has been set to equal our debt amortization is quite conservative as it represents approximately 6% of the charter free market value of our vessels as of year-end, when our fleet is, on average, less than eight years old.

Despite the conservative reserve and the increased common unit distribution, we expect our common unit coverage to increase going forward due to the impact of the three new vessel acquisitions, the intended refinancing and the increased charter rates that some of our vessels will be earning into 2020, especially after their respective scrubber retrofits.

Now turning to Slide 3, the Partnership's net income from continuing operations for the fourth quarter was $5.8 million compared to $3.4 million in the previous quarter. We are pleased that during the quarter we announced two major transactions. As aforementioned, we complete the acquisition of the three 10,000 TEU containers with long-term charter with Hapag-Lloyd. And we had entered into term sheet to partially refinance the 2017 credit facility.

Moreover, during the fourth quarter, we successfully installed scrubbers on three 5,000 TEU container vessels. The Partnership's charter coverage for 2020 and 2021 including the new acquisitions corresponds to 92% and 73% respectively, while the Partnership's remaining charted duration stood, at the end of the fourth quarter, at 4.6 years.

Moving to Slide 4, revenues for the quarter were $27.7 million, slightly above revenue of $27.6 million during the fourth quarter of '18. Total expense for the quarter were $18.2 million compared to $16.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. Voyage expenses increased to $1.1 million compared to $0.8 million in the respective period in 2018.

Total vessel operating expenses amounted to $7.7 million compared to $6.9 million during the fourth quarter of '18. The increase in operating expenses was mainly due to costs incurred in connection with passing of special survey of four of our ships.

Total expenses for the fourth quarter also include vessel depreciation and amortization of $7.5 million compared to $7.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. The increase in depreciation and amortization during the fourth quarter of '19 was mainly attributable to the completion of the special surveys and installation of scrubber systems in three of our vessels during the second half of 2019.

General and administrative expenses for the fourth quarter of '19 amounted to $2 million as compared to $1.2 million in the fourth quarter of '18. The increase reflects costs incurred related with the acquisition of the three 10,000 TEU containers and certain non-cash expenses related to the equity incentive plan. The partnership recorded net income from continuing operations of $5.8 million for the fourth quarter 2019 compared to $3.4 million in the previous quarter and $6.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2018.

On Slide 5, you can see the details of our operating surplus calculations that determine the distribution to our unit holders compared to the previous quarter. Operating surplus is a non-GAAP financial measure which is defined fully in our press release. We have generated approximately $15 million in cash from operations for the quarter before accounting for the capital reserve. We allocated $7.7 million to the capital reserve in line with the previous quarter. After adjusting for the capital reserve, the adjusted operating surplus amount to $7.5 million which translates into approximately 1.1 common unit coverage for the increased common unit distribution.

On Slide 6 you can see the details of our balance sheet. As of the end of the fourth quarter the Partners' capital amounted to $406.7 million, a decrease of $474.6 million compared to $881.3 million as of year-end 2018. The decrease was primarily due to the spin-off of a tanker business. The distributions declared and paid in total amount of $28.8 million in 2019 and a total net loss of $122.5 million for the year, including an impairment charge of $149.6 million related to the Diamond S transaction.

Total debt decreased by $183.5 million to $262.4 million compared to the $445.9 million as of the end of 2019. The decrease is attributable to the prepayment of debt to the tune of $106.5 million in connection with Diamond S transaction and scheduled principal payments during the year.

After the acquisition of the three 10,000 TEU container vessels and the quarterly debt repayment under our 2017 credit facility at the beginning of the first quarter 2020, our current debt outstanding is $370.2 million and it's expected to increase to $405.6 million, after we complete the previously announced refinancing of three of our vessels. Finally, total cash as of year-end amounted to $63.5 including restricted cash of $5.5 million.

Turning to Slide 5 -- sorry turning to Slide 7, we're pleased that we completed last month the acquisition of three 10,000 TEU sister container vessels with long term charters attached namely the Athos, Aristomenis and Athenian. All three vessels are built in 2011 at Samsung Heavy in Korea and they are high specification vessels. They're among the largest container vessels that are available in the charter market and hence quite popular with charters.

All three vessels are fixed to Hapag-Lloyd with the charter firm period expiring in April 2024. The gross charter rate for each vessel currently amounts $27,000 per day increasing to $28,000 per day for the Aristomenis from October 2020 and from July 2021 onwards for the Athos and the Athenian.

The time charter includes two one-year options on $32,500 and $33,500 gross per day respectively. We expect that these new charters would significantly increase the Partnership's cash flow visibility and distributable cash flow. With this transaction, we have further diversified our customer base with the addition of Hapag-Lloyd to our customer base, which is the fifth largest container operator globally controlling about 1.7 million TEU of capacity and is a member of the VEC [Phonetic] container operator alliance.

The vessels were acquired for a total consideration of $162.6 million. The acquisition of the Athenian was funded with $38.5 million drawn under a term loan entered with Hamburg Commercial bank and $15.7 million of cash at hand.

The acquisition of Aristomenis and Athos were funded through a sale and leaseback transaction entered into with the CMB Financial Leasing for an amount of $38.5 million lease [Phonetic] and $31.4 million cash at hand. Both financial arrangements bear a cost of LIBOR plus 255 basis points and principal amortization under the Hamburg Commercial bank credit facility and the CMB Financial Lease amounts to $2.5 million per quarter in total.

Moving to Slide 8, the average remaining charter duration of our fleet is 4.6 years with 92% charter coverage for 2020 and 73% for 2021. Three of our ships will roll off their charters during 2020 namely the Cape Agamemnon, the CMA CGM Amazon and the CMA CGM Uruguay. We discuss the market prospects for our 9,000 TEU container vessels in more detail on the next slide; that is Slide 9.

During the fourth quarter Neo-Panamax Charter rates remained remarkably stable despite a seasonally weaker demand toward the end of the year. Currently there are no idle 8,000 TEU vessels or larger. The idle fleet is presently estimated at 6% of the total fleet, but this includes a number of post-Panamax container vessels being retrofitted with scrubbers. The remaining idle vessels are below 8,000 TEU in size, mostly figures [Phonetic] below Panamax size.

Demolition for full year 2019 amounted to approximately 179,000 TEU compared to 119,000 TEU for the full year of 2018. In terms of the order book, at the beginning of January 2020, it stood at $2.4 million TEU, equivalent to 10.6% of the total fleet.

Looking ahead, initial analyst's forecasts expect slightly improved demand growth at 2.8% for 2020 compared to 2019, but still below vessel capacity growth, which is estimated at 3.1%. These estimates, however, do not take into account vessels out of service for scrubber retrofit as it is estimated that, on average, approximately 1.9% of fleet capacity for the full year of 2020 will be offline for scrubber retrofits, thus continuing to materially restrict vessel supply.

It is currently too early to say what the impact of the coronavirus is going to be on the global economy and in turn on container vessel demand, but it will almost certainly delay scrubber retrofits as CPRs are working at reduced capacity and service engineers have difficulty traveling in and out of China.

In addition, the implementation of IMO 2020 at the beginning of the year saw the price differential between compliant fuel and higher sulfur fuel widen significantly. If the spread continues to remain at or close to present levels, it has the potential to further restrict vessels supply as operators and owners may decide to send more vessel for scrubber retrofits and reduce sailing speeds across their operating fleets. In this environment, demand for post-Panamax vessels and especially wide beam eco-container vessels with high reefer intake, like our 9,000 TEU containers coming of charter this and next year remains robust.

Over the coming months and as we enter the seasonally more active period for operators, we shall engage with potential charters for the employment of these vessels with the aim of striking the right mix between charter rate and charter duration.

Now turning to Slide 10, as previously discussed in our press release of 18th December, we have entered into a term sheet with ICBC Financial Leasing for the sale and leaseback of three vessels currently mortgaged under 2017 credit facility for a total amount of $155.4 million. The estimated repayment amount required to release the three vessels under the 2017 credit facility based on the current principal amount outstanding and vessel's charter free fair market values as of year-end 2019 is $119.9 million.

Principal repayments under the ICBC Lease amount to $2.8 million per quarter. The lease bears a cost of LIBOR plus 260 basis points and has a duration of seven years after drawdown, including a mandatory purchase obligation for the partnership at the end of the lease at a predetermined price of $77.7 million in total. In addition, the partnership has various purchase options commencing from the first year of the lease.

Moving to Slide 11, we expect this transaction to lower our debt amortization cost and increase the partnerships' liquidity. In particular, upon completion of the transaction, debt amortization under the 2017 facility and the ICBC lease will amount to $27.4 million per year. This compares to $30.8 million currently paid under our 2017 credit facility which results in $3.4 million in annual debt amortization savings.

Moreover, the partial refinancing is also expect to generate approximately $35.4 million of additional liquidity as we expect to receive $155.4 million from ICBC and repay $119.9 million under the 2017 facility.

On Slide 12, we outlined our fleet scrubber retrofit program. As previously highlighted, during the fourth quarter, we completed scrubber retrofits on three vessels, increasing the number of ships in our fleet retrofitted to four as a scrubber installation of the Agamemnon was completed in the third quarter of 2019.

Out of the remaining three vessels one of our 5,000 TEU vessels has seen its scrubber retrofit completed and is completing sea trials as we speak. The remaining two vessels currently at the shipyards are expected to complete the retrofit in late February or early March but is subject to delays associated with the coronavirus outbreak. I would like here to remind you that for our 5,000 TEU container vessels maximum of higher is capped at 12 days.

Moving to Slide 13, I would like to conclude by saying that the partnership will continue to see growth opportunities across different shipping segments with the aim of increasing long term distributable cash flows. We will continue to seek opportunities at the container segment as a container industry offers longer period in employment that fits well with our business model. However, we remain open to other types of investments including LNG carriers and tankers vessels if there is suitable employment that fits our business model.

On this slide you see a summary of certain assets that are currently controlled by our sponsor, and depending on their employment profile could be vendor to CPLP. In addition to these assets, we continue to seek opportunities in the second-hand market. Given our expected cash flow generation going forward and subject to our ability to raise additional capital, if required, we believe that we are well positioned to further grow the partnership in the coming quarters which in turn can help us deliver further common unit distribution growth along the lines of the recently announced common unit distribution increase.

And with that I'm happy to answer any questions you may have.

Questions and Answers:


Thank you very much sir. [Operator Instructions] We will now take our first question. Caller please go ahead. Your line is now open.

Benjamin Nolan -- Stifel Nicolaus -- Analyst

Hey Jerry, this is Ben Nolan from Stifel.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Hi Ben.

Benjamin Nolan -- Stifel Nicolaus -- Analyst

Hey. You do an extremely thorough job, makes it hard to ask smart questions. But I'll do my best. I was curious if maybe you could talk a little bit about the thinking on the distribution increase, appreciating that there was the -- what we think is a really nice vessel acquisition but at the same time there's four vessels that are coming off contract in the next year or so where -- at least for the container ships, the market looks pretty promising but it's kind of unknown. So could you maybe talk through sort of how you're balancing that uncertainty against the decision to increase distributions?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Thank you, Ben, and that gives me an opportunity, I think, to answer three questions. Firstly how we thought about the distribution. Secondly on the rechartering of the Cape which is obviously going to be rechartered at lower rates as well as what we see in terms of the 9,000 TEU containers. So bear with me, I will use your question to answer all those issues.

So, first starting with the increase in the distribution, I mean the accretion of the drop downs going forward as well as the refinancing is obviously higher than the $0.035 quarterly increase. But I think apart from [Technical Issues] we wanted to share part of this accretion with our unit holders. For us, it's also effectively a signal for the following things.

Firstly, I think it's a very strong signal that the current distribution is safe and sustainable, given the long term employment profile of our vessels and that we also feels very comfortable with our rechartering prospects of the four vessels that come up for charter renewals this and next year and I'll will get back to this.

Secondly, I think it's a signal that we can deliver substantial distribution growth as we complete acquisitions. In this case we grew the distribution by 11%. And I think if we can make accretive transactions like the one we just completed, we hope to be able to deliver similar annual distribution growth going forward.

Thirdly, we still want to balance distribution growth and returning value to our unit holders with growing the Partnership and replenishing our fleet and achieving scale that we believe in turn will enhance our equity valuation.

We are currently trading at a yield of excess 11%, despite the strong distribution coverage we have delivered so far as well as the distribution increase and we expect that if anything, the distribution coverage is going to increase going forward.

Hopefully, as we're executing our business plan, we will be able to achieve a lower cost of capital that will allows us in turn to achieve more accretive transactions going forward. So that's the rationale on the -- if you want, on the distribution growth.

But, to your question on the rechartering risk, if I may start with the Cape Agamemnon; the Cape Agamemnon charter expires in late June 2020. She is currently fixed at the legacy rate of $42,200 per day, while market today for 12 months charters should be closer to $12,000 to $13,000 for a non-scrubber fitted ships.

Expectations of course that also are partly reflected in that number is that the market will recover from the current sub-opex lows that we experience. But if we assume for a moment that we will fix around those levels $12,000, $13,000. That's a loss of about $30,000 per day of EBITDA or annualized -- a bit less than $11 million.

But then, if you just think about the uptick that we'll have from the HMM vessels which compared to last year is an uptick including the scrubber retrofit per ship of just short of $11,000 per day for each ship. This translates to the approximately $54,000 per day across the five ships. So net positive compared to what we lose with the Cape Agamemnon is still $24,000 or approximately $8.6 million per year.

So, what I'm trying to say is that the effect of any charter renewal for the Cape Agamemnon will be more than offset from whatever is already locked in, in terms of higher rates.

Now with regard to the Cape Agamemnon, I'm not saying necessarily we're going to fix and keep the vessel. As I have said in previous calls, we will decide closer to its redelivery and be speculative about it whether we fix here for -- on the long term or we sell and replace her with a more appropriate asset class.

And now finally turning to our 9,000 TEU vessels which is the real elephant in the room, if you want, because I think that will determine, up to a large extent, not the distribution by any means, but the distribution coverage going forward for 2020 or 2021.

When you look at the container industry, container order book is very close to historical lows. It's less than 11%. You have an idle fleet of about 5.5% which really masks the fact that about 3% of this is really ships being retrofitted with scrubbers and the rest, the 2.5% is mostly ships below Panamax size, because we have a bifurcated market right now and any post-Panamax, Neo-Panamax vessels [Technical Issues] while anything below Panamax or feeder size is doing very badly right now.

Container vessel demolition is quite robust and really the scrubber retrofit is having -- had a severe impact on the market. I think analysts expect a fairly balanced market for 2020 say -- you know Clarksons will tell you that they expect 2.8% demand growth versus 3.1% supply growth. But at the same time, we expect that about 2% of capacity will be off hire due to scrubber retrofit. And this scrubber retrofits affect mostly the larger post-Panamax vessels. So from the 195 scrubber retrofits in 2020, 114 of these are 6,000 TEU or larger ships.

Then you have the impact of the U.S.-China trade war. Last year I think the impact was -- in terms of demand growth was minus 0.7%. I think this year is expected to be more muted toward minus 0.5%. That's partly because of the phase one trade deal. That reduces tariffs on some import from China and also because there are substitution volumes coming into the U.S.

The unknown, if you want, is the indirect impact of tariffs but also coronavirus that might affect global GDP and trade. But in this environment, demand for our 9,000 TEU ships which are wide beam eco ships, very much sought-after with high reefer capacity is -- the prospects are quite good because such assets are very scarce.

We have seen two recent data points. We have seen, as I think I mentioned in our last call, a vessel very similar to ours being fixed for one year in the very high-30s and we have seen also an older 8,000 TEU ship non-eco, nonwide beam being fixed in the high-20s recently, when the previous data point a couple of months ago was the mid-to-low 20s. Sorry, the vessel -- the 8,000 TEU was fixed in the high-20s when the previous November -- October/November data point was around $23,000, $25,000.

So the market, if anything, has moved up over the last two or three months. The demand/supply situation is not expected to change. If anything, supplies expected to be further restricted, be it because delays at scrubber retrofits on the back of the coronavirus which have been already quite long.

There is the issue of more ships going to scrubber retrofit, given the spread between compliant fuel and [Indecipherable] and potentially lower speed. So we feel quite comfortable with rechartering risk. But even if you assume, let's say significantly lower rates than what we have previously seen, again, you will find that we will still be able to deliver on distribution and strong distribution coverage on the back of this.

So this is why we felt comfortable to go ahead with distribution increase and quiet a significant one, if you want. Sorry for the long answer.

Benjamin Nolan -- Stifel Nicolaus -- Analyst

Yeah. For my follow-up, I'll try to give you something that is a little bit more quick to answer but -- and I might -- by the way that was very thorough. I appreciate it. But my follow-up is really to some of the scrubbers and maybe the out time associated with those. I know that HMM vessels only have 12 days associated with the -- with respect to the Archimidis, any idea how much time that will take to install the scrubber and also are there any other drydockings that are scheduled that we should think about in terms of modeling for this year?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Not -- well let me answer, with regard to the Archimidis, we were expecting a duration of around 65 days. But as I mentioned in my prepared remarks, the coronavirus impact is very difficult to quantify. Shipyards are really working at half of their capacity in the best of cases.

And very often our superintendent engineers or service engineers of the equipment manufacturers are not allowed to fly into China or from one place in China to another or they have -- or there are significant delays. So, I think it's difficult to predict at this stage the completion date. I would expect that it will be within, let's say, mid-March.

But I think we will have to revisit this one when we have more information. We were very fortunate that the fourth Hyundai ship effectively left the shipyard. It's actually completed its scrubber sea trials today and is now being redelivered to the charters. So that leaves only two ships. One 5,000 TEU with the Cape [Indecipherable] and the Archimidis.

Now, all our 5,000 TEU ships are passing simultaneously special surveys for the so called extended special surveys, so -- that they have to, again, go into drydock after 7.5 years. Same for the Archimidis but it's a normal drydock, so it's a five years drydock. And then, I think you also have the Agamemnon that will have to go into drydock after this is redelivered from its charters in July and also install a ballast water treatment system.

Benjamin Nolan -- Stifel Nicolaus -- Analyst

Okay, very thorough again, I appreciate it. Thank you, Jerry.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Thanks, Ben.


Thank you very much. We will now take our next question. Caller please go ahead, your line is open.

Liam Burke -- B.Riley FBR -- Analyst

Liam Burke, B. Riley FBR.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Hi Liam, how are you?

Liam Burke -- B.Riley FBR -- Analyst

I'm fine, thanks Jerry, how are you doing today?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Not bad.

Liam Burke -- B.Riley FBR -- Analyst

Jerry, on some of the acquisitions you're -- on the acquisitions you mentioned, you saw the highlighted LNG carriers. That market seems to be a little more variable on a year-to-year basis based on LNG production versus the container market that has seen steady growth and is more opened longer term charters. Why would an LNG carrier fit into how you lay out the longer term strategy for the MLP?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Well, I will disagree with only a part of your statement that, if anything LNG -- the LNG industry tends to have longer term charters than the container market. Of course they have been shorter over the last few years, but still I think it's more -- it's more customary to find longer term charters in the LNG side than on the container side.

And I think that would be, if we were to look at the LNG acquisitions for example or tanker acquisitions for that matter. I think that would be the important differentiating factor. If there is a charter in place that will alleviate any volatility.

So, what I think we are trying to say is that we are open to any type of shipping investments as long as they tick certain boxes, if we like the assets if there are long-term charters attached and we can put an accretive deal together. Now, we tend to be a little agnostic on the segment as we have done in the past. But I think having cash flow visibility is important there I fully agree with you.

Liam Burke -- B.Riley FBR -- Analyst

Great. And just on the overall macro market. If it's possible to look past the coronavirus, the container market in general has been typically a steady grower for the past 20, 30 years except for one or two years. Do you see any change to that continued growth?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

I think containerized goods movement will continue to grow. The only think that we have seen over the last I think few years is a step down in terms of the rate of growth. It tended to be almost double what it is today. But in terms -- but in the end, it's also very much correlated to global GDP growth.

But the trend, as you say, continues to be positive and it is interesting that despite the trade wars, we have seen positive momentum. And at the same time, which is also very important, operators have been fairly disciplined for a change when it comes to, and owners of course, when it comes to ordering ships. So we have a fairly reasonably demand/supply balance.

Liam Burke -- B.Riley FBR -- Analyst

Great. Thank you, Jerry.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Thank you, Liam.


[Operator Instructions] We will now take our next question. Caller please go ahead, your line is now open.

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

Howdy Jerry, it's Randy Giveans from Jefferies.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Hey Randy, how's it going?

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

It is well. All right, a few quick, just brief questions here. So, looking at your scrubber strategy, four installed I guess five now to be installed next month. The five HMM ships, those come with $5,000 a day rate step-ups, what about the 8,200 TEU container ships. Are those also including charter rate step-ups or does the charterer pay for those scrubbers?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Well, there the charter rate is blended, so I cannot tell you what the exact rate is. We have disclosed an EBITDA number because the charterer wants to keep it confidential, unfortunately.

But there -- once the scrubbers is fitted, then the new charter begins. You'll see that, I think we have disclosed previously that during the duration of these charters, these vessels are expected to generate an EBITDA of $44.5 million.

Again, I'm sorry for not being able to disclose the exact rate but this was the charterer's sensitivity. But the answer is that the rate there is one and it takes into account the scrubber retrofit. It's not a two-tiered rate.

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

So that $44 million goes through 2024 and that's for both ships total?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Yes, correct, yes.

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

All right. So in the four years, $44 million EBITDA. Got it, all right. And then the three recently acquired vessels, do those have scrubbers? If not, what is the kind of plan for those?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

So, for those it is, since they have a charter already, we are not -- and for another four years, we are not really incentivized to install the scrubber unless the charterer wants us to. If we enter into that discussion, we will have to negotiate a rate increase or potentially also a duration increase or both for us to install the scrubber. Typically, we prefer to install the scrubber ourselves so that we can also negotiate a better premium.

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

Yes, OK. But that is upside from there. They do not have scrubbers?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director


Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

All right. And then I guess, third part of the same question. Thoughts or negotiations on selling scrubbers on the CMA CGM ships? I know they're obviously out for rechartering here pretty soon but there's one thought of maybe chartering or extending those charters with scrubbers?

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

That's absolutely right. These are eco ships and as such, they tend to have a lower consumption profile compared to let's say their -- to the 8,000 TEU containerships. But in the end, given where the spread is today, it still makes sense to install scrubbers on the ships.

I think we will follow the same policy that we have followed with the rest of our vessels. So, as we negotiate, we will see what the charterer wants. If the charterer wants us to install the scrubber, then we will. We don't have any problem of doing it but we will need to get paid for it.

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

Got it, all right. And then, I guess segueing to last question, CMA CGM, there has been some concern around their balance sheet, their liquidity situation, has there been discussions with obviously amendments to kind of the current charters. Again, I know they all expire in the next year or maybe plans for rechartering those container ships, would you expect those to stay with CMA CGM or third party? Kind of a two-part question there.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

No. no, concerns whatsoever. I mean, CMA CGM I know what you referred to but I think as charter even in -- even if when -- in the post-Lehman let's say, crisis when they faced the worst financial difficulties, they have been always right by their owners.

And definitely we haven't heard anything from them partly because also these vessels are currently chartered probably in the money. So, I don't think CMA would want to renegotiate those ships; it will do as a favor actually.

I think the idea is that they have been performing well with CMA and there is a potential for direct continuation. But in the end, we will have to do what's best for us in the sense that we will have to shop around and see where we can get the best combination of charter rates and duration.

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

Perfect. Well, that's it from me. Thanks so much for the robust call.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Thanks, Randy.


And there are no further questions waiting, sir.

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Thank you very much all for joining us today.


[Operator Closing Remarks]

Duration: 42 minutes

Call participants:

Jerry Kalogiratos -- Chief Executive Officer & Director

Benjamin Nolan -- Stifel Nicolaus -- Analyst

Liam Burke -- B.Riley FBR -- Analyst

Randy Giveans -- Jefferies -- Analyst

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