The Strategist

Maersk to buy Hamburg Süd

12/02/2016 - 13:34

Danish Maersk Line, the world’s largest container shipping company, and Oetker Group reached agreement on Maersk Line’s acquisition of German shipping company Hamburg Süd, the Danish company said in a statement. The acquisition is subject to final agreement and approval of relevant authorities.

Maersk Line
Maersk Line
Hamburg Süd (founded in 1871) is currently the world’s seventh-largest transport and logistics shipping line in the world, serves ocean routes between North and South. The company owns and operates a fleet of 130 container ships with a total capacity of 625 thous. TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent unit). The German company employs 5960 people in more than 250 offices worldwide. Hamburg Süd provides services through its main brands: Hamburg Süd (Germany), CCNI (Chile) and Aliança (Brazil). In 2015, annual turnover of Hamburg Süd has reached $ 6.7 billion, of which $ 6.261 billion was received from container shipping. Hamburg Süd is part of Oetker Group, one of the largest and most well-known family businesses in Germany. 

22 September 2016, Maersk Line announced its intention to increase its market share through acquisition of new core assets.

In case the deal is sealed, Hamburg Süd and Aliança will continue to operate as separate brands and serve customers through its local offices.

Among other conditions, the transaction is subject to approval by authorities of China, Korea, Australia, Brazil, the USA and the EU. In this regard, Maersk Line intends to work closely with the authorities. According to the company’s statement, Maersk looks forward to completion of the transaction settlement process before the end of 2017. Prior to that, Hamburg Süd and Maersk Line will continue to operate separately.

Acquisition of such a large asset will add to Maersk Line’s container capacity about 3.8 million TEUs, and increased its share in the global market to 18.6%. The combined fleet of ships will consist of 741 container vessels with an average age of 8.7 years.

Maersk Line is the world's largest shipping line. The company serves its customers through 317 offices in 112 countries. Maersk Line employs 7.1 thousand office workers and 25.5 thousand sailors. The line operates through brands Maersk Line, Safmarine and SEALAND (North and South America). Besides, Maersk Line is a holding company for MCC Transport (Asia), Seago Line (Europe) and Mercosul (Brazil). As of May 2015, Maersk Line fleet’s consisted of 273 own vessels (1.7 million TEUs) and 335 chartered vessels (1.2 million TEUs). Maersk Line is included in Maersk Group (headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark). The group employs more than 88 thousand people in 130 countries.

Container shipping industry is going through hard times due to slowdown in world trade, yet growth is still possible, says The Boston Consulting Group in a study.

According to the paper, container companies have suffered weaker demand in recent years. The Boston Consulting Group advised them to use new approaches to increase performance and successfully overcome the crisis.

Despite the fact that growth of global container traffic in 2015-2020 could speed up from 2.2% to 3.8% per year, gap between supply and demand will also continue to grow in a range of 8.2% to 13.8%, compared with 7% in 2015.