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Maersk would become a reefer behemoth with German acquisition

The EU Commission will definitely take a critical stance on the size of the market share that would potentially befall a combination of Maersk Line and Hamburg Süd, says Lars Jensen of Seaintelligence Consulting.

If Germany's Oetker family decides to sell their container carrier Hamburg Süd to Maersk Line – a move which is deemed highly plausible among analysts and several insiders in the container market – Maersk Line would then hold an overwhelmingly large share of the global market in reefer container freight with refrigerated products such as bananas, citrus, and meat.

"It would be a red flag, and the EU Commission would definitely take a critical stance on how large the market share would be for the combined Maersk Line and Hamburg Süd. I'm sure that both parties are aware of this, but the big market share would not necessarily hinder a takeover. It's been done before, where a takeover became subject to certain conditions, as when Maersk purchased P&O Nedlloyd and had to get rid of activities in Africa," Lars Jensen of Seaintelligence Consulting tells ShippingWatch.

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