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Maersk begins process to integrate Hamburg Süd fleet

Danish carrier expects savings of $350m-$400m a year from 2019, as it takes over 105 ships from Hamburg Süd

MAERSK Line is about to start the process of integrating Hamburg Süd after announcing it had received all regulatory approvals for its $4bn acquisition of the German carrier and had completed the deal.

The Danish giant will become even bigger as it integrates 105 ships operated by Hamburg Süd into its own fleet, taking its total container capacity to 4.2m teu, giving it a 19.3% share of global fleet capacity.

Hamburg Süd’s vessels will be absorbed into the Maersk Line fleet, taking the combined fleet to a total of 773 owned and chartered vessels.

Maersk chief executive Søren Skou said: “With the final approval of the acquisition we have reached an important milestone in our strategy to become an integrated transport and logistics company delivering sustainable growth.

“Hamburg Süd is an outstanding brand with high-quality products. By combining our two businesses we will reinforce the global positions of both companies and enhance our service offers towards customers.”

The acquisition is expected to generate annual operational synergies of around $350m-$400m from 2019, primarily derived from integrating and optimising the vessel networks as well as utilising the terminal capacity in APM Terminals, Maersk said in a statement.

Hamburg Süd chairman Ottmar Gast will retire as chairman of the executive board to become new chairman of the supervisory board. Maersk chief operating officer Søren Toft will become join the supervisory board, while Arnt Vespermann will become chief executive of Hamburg Süd.

“Becoming part of the world’s number one shipping company will create a lot of opportunities,” Mr Vespermann said. “We will strengthen Hamburg Süd in the global playing field and grow our market share together. At the same time, Hamburg Süd will continue serving our customers as a separate brand.”

Maersk is acquiring Hamburg Süd for on a cash and debt-free basis and will finance the acquisition through a syndicated loan facility.

Maersk added that its guidance for 2017 remained unchanged as the net impact on underlying results from the consolidation of Hamburg Süd would be immaterial. Transaction and integration costs of around $70m would be accounted for in 2017, it said.

30 Nov 2017 | NEWS | Lloyd’s List