Global law firm HFW acted as legal counsel on the launch of the shipping industry’s inaugural sustainable fund. The fund, known as Low Emission Methanol Shipping Company (LEMSCO), was initiated by maritime investment advisor ProMarine AG and encompasses an initial portfolio of four methanol-fueled MR tankers acquired from Proman and Stena Bulk.
Backed by equity investors and financed through a green loan from ABN AMRO, LEMSCO stands out as an innovative step towards sustainable shipping practices. As part of the arrangement, the fund secures a dedicated supply contract from Proman, a major methanol producer. This ensures that the fleet operates not only with cost-effectiveness but also relies on a technology-proven, globally available, low-emission alternative fuel.
HFW’s involvement extended to advising the fund itself and providing support to Proman and Stena Bulk throughout the transaction. The legal team, led by Gudmund Bernitz and Katherine Noble, covered finance, shipping, and fuel-supply aspects, with additional support from HFW’s Owen Webb and Andrzej Czernis. Corporate aspects were handled by HFW’s Alex Kyriakoulis, Audrey Hsieh, and Grace Serena-Heaton, while Anthony Woolich addressed IP considerations, and Adam Topping tackled regulatory matters.
Gudmund Bernitz, Partner and Shipping Sustainability Ambassador at HFW, expressed pride in their contribution to this transformative project. “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 decarbonization of shipping,” he stated.