Samskip acquires Euro Container Line AS to further strengthen its presence in Nordic area

By Curious

Samskip has completed the acquisition of Euro Container Lines AS, building on a strategy for growth in the Nordic area to make its largest ever acquisitive move in Norway.

The ECL acquisition aims to strengthen Samskip's position in the Norwegian market by enhancing the speed and frequency of services delivering a second-to-none value proposition for its Norwegian client base.

In a significant enhancement for regional fishing industry exporters in particular, the acquisition will deliver a substantially improved Norwegian coastal service under the direct control of Samskip.

Samskip acquires Euro Container Line AS to further strengthen its presence in Nordic area

Image courtesy: Samskip

Total annual Norwegian Samskip volumes are expected to increase substantially, from the current 55,000 TEU to 90,000 TEU; increasing overall annual volumes from 850,000 TEU to 885,000 TEU. The acquisition also means a significant expansion in the refrigerated transport capacity Samskip can offer connecting with its own cold stores in Ålesund and Rotterdam, which increases to around 275-300 reefer containers per week.

The acquisition of ECL in Norway is only the latest step taken by Samskip to strengthen its position in Norway.

Jens Holger Nielsen, CEO Samskip says: “The negotiations between the two firms were led by Mr. Olafur Olafsson, on behalf of Samskip, and Kristian Eidesvik, on behalf of ECL. We believe the acquisition further highlights our commitment to the Norwegian market, having recently purchased a 50% stake in Silver Green AS.

“The ECL deal is a definitive move in this market and completes the regional acquisition strategy we have been developing over the past years. I think it is fair to say that we will deliver greater value to our clients in Norway, putting us in the position to provide the all-round services that Samskip is renowned for in other major fishing nations such as Iceland and the Faroe Islands. Samskip's view is that the acquisition strengthens what is our already strong position as a major operator in temperature controlled logistics”.

15 years of service growth in Norway – background to the acquisition
Samskip has been progressively strengthening its market position in the European door-to-door 45ft dry and deep sea feeder transports as well as within the frozen fish segment from North Atlantic producers to better serve its customers. Its substantial commitments have extended to investments in more reefer vessels, container services, cold-store and terminal operations, as well as global forwarding solutions. By adding Hamburg and Bremerhaven to Samskip's network, the Norwegian product portfolio becomes an extensive one.

Samskip's acquisition of ECL is representative of its careful planning to sustain vigorous growth.

The acquisition will result in increased competition in a market previously dominated by Samskip competitors, with the benefits for clients expected to be immediate and tangible. Direct access to Samskip's comprehensive and robust regional and global service network will offer Norwegian exporters both enhanced reliability and the transport opportunities that competitors cannot match.

The ECL deal follows the earlier purchase of shares by Samskip Logistics in Silver Green AS. Silver Green AS, based in Bergen, Norway, operates a fleet of 14 reefer vessels. The company is a market leader within its segment, with its primary trading being in the North Atlantic, Baltic, North Sea and Black Sea. Samskip Logistics now owns five reefer vessels.

Vessel system on fixed day rotations in a wide range of ports
Samskip will be calling 14 ports in total, and possibly calling additional ports on an inducement basis; where Holla, Ikornes, Maløy and Haugesund will be new additions to the Samskip network.

With a fixed twice-weekly sailing schedule ex-Rotterdam and two additional fixed sailings ex-Hamburg, Samskip will increase total frequency to 3-4 sailings per week into Norway, depending on seasonal demand.

Source: Samskip