How Comfortable Are Your Handcuffs? | Teekay

How Comfortable Are Your Handcuffs?

6 September 2019

Pooling is a highly competitive business, new entrants to the market in the last eighteen months has continued this trend, and every ship that’s available to join a pool will no doubt receive many invitations and knocks on the door. Every pool will consider they have a USP, be it earnings, transparency or technical support – here at Teekay we think we’re pretty good on all three. What’s the USP that keeps you in your current pool?

What I don’t understand is in a market that’s about to turn quite volatile is why a pool would handcuff a Partner for 12 months taking away much of their ability to sell a vessel or secure a good paying time charter that would take care of them through a lower market. Hopefully we have a couple of good years ahead of us now, and this is where an Owner needs flexibility with their assets, being able to respond rather than seeing their vessel locked in for a year. We all get that pools need stability, but at whose expense?

At Teekay our pools have no lock in period. From the day a Partner joins, if the market has changed and a new strategy is needed, they’re at liberty to give an exit notice. We’d like a 90 day notice but if there’s a compelling reason a partner needs their ship back sooner, and the ship isn’t committed for a cargo, early exits can be arranged.

We like our Partners, but we figure out, if they want to leave our pool, there’s probably a very good reason.