German shipping giants discuss merger
The two largest shipping firms in Germany have entered exploratory talks to consider a merger.
Posted by Ken Hayes
Germany's two largest shipping groups are involved in business negotiations about a possible merger.
Hapag-Lloyd and Hamburg-Sued are exploring the move, a statement by Hapag-Lloyd has confirmed.
It stated that the boards of the two firms "are investigating if, and under what conditions, a merger of both companies would be of interest", with the consent of the shareholders of both companies.
If the two were to join together, it would create the world's fourth largest company in the industry behind Maersk, Mediterranean Shipping Company and CMA CGM, with annual revenue of over €10 billion (£8.14 billion), around 250 vessels and 11,500 staff, Reuters noted.
The news provider quoted Westend Brokers Research analyst Klaus Kraenzle as stating that the move would be good for Germany and both firms, commenting that without it, "Hamburg-Sued would, in the long-term, run into difficulties in keeping up with the big industry players".
Four international forwarders - Kuhne + Nagel, DB Schenker, Hellmann Worldwide Logistics and Panalpina - have voted Hapag-Lloyd the best liner shipping company they dealt with in 2012, the firm revealed last week.