The closure of the service that linked the Mediterranean to the US East Coast and parts of Latin America marks the end of a 60-year presence for the carrier on this trade. According to Alphaliner, the service is shut down due to persistent losses.
Hapag-Lloyd CEO Rolf Habben Jansen heralds a pause in growth for the German carrier in order to digest the mergers with CSAV and UASC and cater to the owners who have lost vast sums in recent years. He does not share the optimism for the market expressed by other carriers.
"If the container carriers see themselves as key players in the supply chain, they have failed," European shippers tell ShippingWatch following a members’ meeting Tuesday. The European Shippers' Council is ready to involve the EU to weigh the dominance of the three alliances.
Maersk has developed 15 digital prototypes, says Maersk's departing chairman Michael Pram Rasmussen at the Maersk General Assembly in Copenhagen on Tuesday. He also expresses "pride" at the work being done by Maersk at shipbreaking facilities in India.
Danish pension funds will invest big-time in shipping, a new COO at French container carrier, and a new deal between Denmark and oil majors for the North Sea are some of this week's top stories on ShippingWatch.
According to Clarksons Platou, Hapag-Lloyd looks set to become one of the winners in a container market which the shipbroker projects will experience significant improvements in 2017 – especially due to a record-low fleet growth.
The EU Commission postpones its final decision concerning Maersk Line's acquisition of Hamburg Süd after the two carriers have made concessions. Maersk Line describes the move as standard procedure and expects EU approval by April 10.
The Journal of Commerce reports that the CEOs of Maersk Line and other container carriers were recently handed subpoenas from US antitrust regulators during a meeting of the industry's closed forum the Box Club.
The world's third-largest container carrier has hired a former Maersk man as one of Rodolphe Saadé's closest employees and new COO of the French company, according to ShippingWatch's sources. Read on to learn who.
The container carriers are working to reduce the number of direct links between several ports on the major tradelanes which will be serviced by the three alliances starting April 1. A new analysis concludes that this could be good for the carriers' business, though it could also hurt the ports.
The container carrier has from 2015 to 2016 virtually eliminated the use of so-called facilitation payments, namely the mild form of bribes as payment in the form of, for instance, cigarettes for pilots, customs officials, and port authorities, reports Danish media dr.dk.
Shipowner Johan Wedell-Wedellsborg opened up about the sale of Stena Weco to Stena Bulk, Maersk Group CEO Søren Skou is building a new CEO Office, and the dry bulk shares have skyrocketed in 2017 so far. Here are this week's top picks on ShippingWatch.
Container carriers Hapag-Lloyd and UASC postpone the deadline for the merger to late May 2017. Dynamar reports that the delay is caused by complex bank negotiations. The launch of The Alliance will not be affected, inform the carriers.
Shippers which routinely send containers to Asia are noting "heavily damaging situations" due to a major decline in capacity on the vessels, says the European Shippers' Council, voicing harsh criticism against the three major alliances.
Things are looking better than it has in a long time for the medium-size container vessels as the charter rates are headed for a more sustainable level. There is an "extraordinary level of activity" right now, writes Alphaliner in the firm's latest analysis.
The downturn in German shipping means that a smaller number of banks have now taken over a large number of feeder vessels from ailing shipowners. This development was noted at Unifeeder in the first half of 2016, as charter prices increased. Yet this trend has turned around, says CEO Jesper Kristensen.
Maersk's CEO, Søren Skou, who also serves as CEO for the group's by-far biggest business area, Maersk Line, is establishing his own staff unit in a so-called CEO Office. The office will be headed by a former McKinsey exec.
The 2M alliance between MSC and Maersk Line will, starting April, increase its capacity on Asia-Europe by 25 percent, and the significant volume expansion could trigger rate disruptions, writes analyst firm Alphaliner in its latest newsletter.
Along with owner Nordic Capital, Unifeeder has designated three areas in which the carrier intends to grow in the coming years before changing ownership again. CEO Jesper Kristensen and Lars Terney, partner of the fund, are both ready for acquisitions, they tell ShippingWatch.
Rickmers Maritime has received word from HSH Nordbank that the bank may be willing to forgive debt if noteholders agree to a similar move. This development means that Rickmers Maritime is now putting together a new restructuring proposal.
In line with other global container carriers, the world's third largest container carrier, France's CMA CGM, booked a deficit for the entire 2016, according to the carrier's report. The fourth quarter, however, showed positive signs.
Maersk plans to sue a Spanish billionaire, Torm CEO Jacob Meldgaard talks to ShippingWatch after the release of the carrier's annual report for 2016, and dry bulk may be closer to recovery. All this and more on ShippingWatch this past week.
Consolidation continues among German shipowners with Hamburg-based Claus-Peter Offen and Offen Group's takeover of Munich's Conto Group. Following the transaction, Offen Group owns a fleet of 169 vessels.
The carrier will "be rooted in the fact that it's a Greenlandic business," and as such, a bigger part of the carrier's fleet will be flagged in Greenland going forward, says CEO Verner Hammeken in an interview with ShippingWatch.
As the first of the three major container alliances, The Alliance is now establishing a trust fund to help the carriers deliver stranded containers if one of the members becomes insolvent. The initiative comes in the wake of criticism from US shippers in particular following the collapse of Hanjin Shipping.
When the new container alliances and 2M launch their new sailing schedules on Asia-Europe a few weeks from now, shippers must expect fewer direct links and thus bigger needs for cargo reloading in ports, according to an analysis from SeaIntel.
Seaspan, one of the world's biggest shipowners, will sell shares and secure debt for USD 1 billion. The company has been hit hard by the shipping crisis and the collapse of South Koran container carrier Hanjin Shipping.
HSH Nordbank has reorganized its shipping portfolio and has thus significantly reduced its exposure to the container segment. Christian Nieswandt, global head of shipping, tells ShippingWatch about the future prioritization for the billions of euros the bank has invested in shipping.
Greenland-based Royal Arctic Line achieved its best result ever in 2016 with a profit of DKK 98 million after taxes. The result came after a year characterized by major changes at the state-owned carrier.
Entirely as expected, Hyundai Merchant Marine is selling ten container vessels to the South Korean state, which will then lease them back to the South Korean container carrier right away. The transaction is financed with a combination of cash, shares, and bonds, reports Yonhap.
South Korea's new container carrier, SM Line, which is built mainly on the remains of collapsed Hanjin Shipping, plans to kick off operations with as many as nine routes this year. The carrier then wants to grow to 41 ships on 25 routes over the next five years.
Maersk Line and IBM are joining forces to develop and implement blockchain technology in the global supply chain. According to the two companies, the technology could save the industry billions of dollars.
It is not necessarily a good thing that the freight rates for container vessels are hovering at historical lows, says Nik Delmeire, Secretary General of the European Shippers' Council. He is puzzled at why the carriers are struggling so much, as he sees no fierce competition.
Maersk Line annually earmarks a double-digit million-dollar figure to roll out a digital strategy for its fleet, says Niels Bruus, the carrier's head of future solutions for fleet management and technology. All Maersk Line's vessels are expected to be digitally linked by 2018.
Israeli container carrier Zim finished 2016 with a major deficit on the bottom line in 2016 despite increasing cargo volumes during the year. Yet the carrier turned a profit in the fourth quarter, and this development will continue, projects CEO Rafi Danieli.
Maersk Line will reroute vessels in order to minimize the nuisances for customers when the Spanish port workers launch their announced strike in coming weeks in protest against the government's plans to liberalize the ports.
Maersk Line returned to Iran in the fall of 2016 after western sanctions against the country were eased. The carrier's presence remains minimal, but the market of 80 million people is definitely interesting, says Christian Juul-Nyholm, Managing Director of Maersk Line in the region.
A new report from the European Community Shipowners' Associations, ECSA, concludes that the EU's maritime industry is under pressure from new shipping hubs around the world such as Singapore and Dubai. Find the shipowners four-point wish list here.
Maersk Line and MSC's South Korean partner HMM now confirms the agreement made with state-owned bank Korea Shipping. The bank will buy ships from HMM and lease them back at a "reasonable price," informs the container carrier.
Gridlocked negotiations between APM Terminals and dockworkers in Gothenburg, a new full-year deficit for J. Lauritzen, and a change in strategy at Damco are among this week's top stories on ShippingWatch.
Icelandic container carrier Eimskip booked record-breaking earnings in 2016. Management expects that the positive trends will continue in 2017 where the acquisition of two logistics companies is expected to boost business. The carrier is still looking for more acquisitions.
One of the leading observers and analysts of the international container industry, founder of SeaIntelligence Consulting, Lars Jensen, presents a qualified projection in his new book about what the sector will look like in 2025. ShippingWatch offers an excerpt from the book here.
Last year's contracts between carriers and shippers were signed at historically low prices when comparing contract rates and spot rates. There could therefore be major rate increases in store when new contracts are negotiated in May.
A change of attitude has emerged in the container sector where carriers have realized that there is no use in offering rock-bottom prices, says Evergreen's chairman. He anticipates higher rates in 2017.
German owners continue to scrap vessels on a large scale after the record year 2016, a year which, according to Clarksons, will be surpassed this year. Yet the fleet is still expected to grow by three percent.
The EU Commission will decide on Maersk Line's acquisition of Hamburg Süd in late March, reports Ritzau Finans in reference to Bloomberg News. The transaction will still need to be cleared by additional regulators.
Several container carriers have received penalties in China for failing to provide correct information about their freight rates to the Chinese ministry of transports. The carriers fined include CMA CGM and Hamburg Süd. But the size of the fine is fairly modest.
The final months of 2016 brought improvements on the routes from Asia to the east coast of South America. But there is still a long way to go in terms of the activity noted on the routes in the past, writes analyst firm Drewry, warning against excessive optimism.
Container carriers have formed several collaborations for digital solutions within the past few weeks alone – and many more similar arrangements will follow in the first half of 2017 in the search for the best digitalization of container carrier services, says analyst Lars Jensen of Seaintelligence Consulting.
Hard-strained Singapore-based Rickmers Maritime took a big hit on the bottom line in 2016, and in its annual report the company once again calls on its creditors for help in solving the massive financial difficulties enveloping the company.
It will largely be the carriers' ability to idle vessels, postpone deliveries, and maintain the number of scrapped vessels, which will decide the economy of the container industry in 2017, according to Alphaliner, which questions Maersk Line's optimism for the market.
Maersk Line and MSC's South Korean collaboration partner Hyundai Merchant Marine will get a majority of the funds made available by the South Korean government to support the country's shipping and shipyard sector. The funds will be used to order new vessels, among other things.
It was far from a deal between equal partners when the 2M alliance with Maersk Line and MSC entered a cooperation agreement with Hyundai Merchant Marine. "We picked up the carrier from the bus stop where the alliance had left it," says Maersk Line CEO Søren Skou today.
The 2M alliance has upgraded its East-West network, a move characterized by the big changes that have taken place in the sector, according to MSC, including the recent slot agreement with Hamburg Süd. Find the complete, new network below.
Yet another large takeover in the European project cargo sector is shifting the power balance in the sector. Germany's Zeaborn is acquiring Rickmers-Linie and NPC Projects, informs the Bremen-based carrier.
Savings related to the merger of Maersk Line and Hamburg Sud's fleets will be key to reaping the rewards of the acquisition of the German carrier, says Maersk Line CEO Søren Skou. But there will be no job guarantee to the employees, he stresses.
Yang Ming is now, for the first time, drawing on the state-backed credit package launched in Taiwan last year. The container carrier plans to raise USD 54 million by selling new shares to the state and other buyers.
Digitalization emerges as the theme when outlining the reasons behind the nomination of Jim Hagemann Snabe to chair Maersk Group and replace Michael Pram Rasmussen who is stepping down. Here is a portrait of Snabe and a focus on some of the digital challenges.
Maersk Line, the world's largest container carrier and the Maersk Group's core business, emerged from 2016 with a resounding loss, and the group as a whole lost nearly USD 2 billion, mainly due to the offshore segment. Here is an overview of Wednesday's annual report from Maersk.
More than a year of price war in the global container industry has come to an end, says Maersk Group CEO and CEO of Maersk Line, Søren Skou. The Danish container carrier has utilized the price war to win major market shares from competitors, he adds.
State-owned Korea Development Bank has put ten Hanjin vessels up for sale at auction, report local media. Anonymous sources tell Korea Herald that the vessels include two container ships and eight bulkers.
Maersk Line suffered a full-year deficit of USD 376 million against a profit of USD 1.3 billion the year before, according to the Maersk Group annual report. But the container carrier expects a billion-dollar improvement for 2017.
South Korea's largest deep sea carrier, Hyundai Merchant Marine, has initiated talks concerning investments in container terminals in Southeast Asia. "We are targeting to make an operating profit in the third quarter of next year," says CEO Yoo Chang-keun.
The Russian competition authorities have fined Maersk Line USD 12 million for collaborating with its competitors to fix prices on the Russian market. The carrier has confirmed the fine which has been appealed.
Taiwanese carrier Wan Hai has knocked Maersk out of first place in the ranking of the most reliable global carriers. Maersk Line has dropped down to number five on SeaIntel's annual list. However, this is not because the Danish carrier is getting worse at keeping to its schedule.
Perhaps Maersk Line can expect a positive result in its interim report, set for release next Wednesday. The battle for the ballast water market has begun. John Fredriksen struggles with two separate issues. And Shipping and offshore are hurting banks. Read this week's top picks on ShippingWatch.
In the first analysis from a major investment bank ahead of the Maersk Group's annual report on Wednesday next week, Jefferies estimates that the container industry is currently enjoying developments strong enough to send Maersk Line into the black in the fourth quarter after the downturn that characterized the rest of 2016.
It was an aggressive Maersk Line which conquered nine percent of the global container market in 2016, says Hapag-Lloyd CEO Rolf Habben Jansen, who now risks losing longtime cooperation agreements with "neighbor carrier" Hamburg Süd to Maersk Line.
The launch of the new container alliances on April 1 will mark a new era for container shipping, and market observers will keep an eye on whether the new setup helps container majors keep rates high on key trades, notes SeaIntel.
"The bottom line is still that this result is not satisfactory," says Rolf Habben Jansen, CEO of Hapag-Lloyd, which has just published its report for last year. 2017 also saw a tough start for the carrier.