Maersk welcomes Hamburg Süd
as deal closes

Published by Jesper Toft Madsen on 30 November 2017


On Thursday 30 November, the two parties put pen to paper on a deal that officially makes Hamburg Süd a part of A.P. Moller - Maersk. Today marks day one of the integration and a common journey to build on the global positions of both brands.

Images by Vivian Koblinsky

In early December 2016, Maersk announced its intention to acquire Hamburg Süd. A year later, the German-based shipping line has officially joined A.P. Moller - Maersk in one of the largest transactions in shipping history.

Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla, Chairman of the A.P. Møller Foundation, has a special welcome message:

“I am pleased to express our sincere welcome wishes to every one of our new colleagues from Hamburg Süd.”

The Chairman of the Foundation points to the many similarities between Hamburg Süd and Maersk: 

“To have Hamburg Süd, with its great history and dedicated team, as part of our company gives us pride. The company you are now joining has, like Hamburg Süd, a strong heritage in shipping as well as a tradition for value-based leadership, where our values are guidelines for each individual employee, all over the world, at sea and onshore.”

With the final regulatory approvals in place, the official closing of the deal represents the culmination of a year’s preparation and planning. The due diligence process alone has involved more than 20,000 documents in a virtual data room. Integration planning teams from both companies have worked together since May to create a joint baseline, design a new Target Operating Model and make plans for implementation and synergy capture, while constantly focusing on servicing existing customers.

Next step: Unlock business potential

Day one marks the first day of an integration that will reinforce the global positions of both Hamburg Süd and Maersk as well as strengthen the separate customer offerings. Work to unlock the business benefits will begin by coordinating the commercial activities to grow joint revenues while integrating operations to start realising synergies.

Like any other integration, it brings both opportunities and challenges.

“Integrating two companies is always a challenge. My wish and hope is that we learn from each other and become stronger together,” says Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla.

Celebrating the welcoming of the German-based shipping line, employees at the Copenhagen headquarters can explore the world of Hamburg Süd and learn more about the integration inside one of the iconic red containers.

Becoming stronger together means that 35,600 employees are teaming up for trade. It means that Hamburg Süd employees are joining the world leader in container shipping and a global workforce that now carries more than 19% of global trade.

Ottmar Gast, Chairman of Hamburg Süd’s Supervisory Board, believes that the integration will bring about plenty of opportunities:

“With a wealth of experience in Maersk and Hamburg Süd, there is so much we can achieve by sharing knowledge and exchanging best practices between our businesses. I am convinced that we will contribute a lot to the achievement of our joint goal of revenue and market share growth as well as improving cost levels and productivity further. From sharing supplier insight and market intelligence, to identifying opportunities to improve equipment maintenance and cargo safety – by listening and learning, we will be able to deliver even better for customers, drive growth and make both brands more competitive and stronger for the future.”

Common ground

While the impact of the integration will vary significantly across teams, everyone will come to understand one another’s business and ways of working, says Søren Skou, CEO of A.P. Moller – Maersk:

“And we will see that we have a lot in common. With over 100 years in shipping and the passion to match our histories, Maersk and Hamburg Süd know what it means to go the extra mile. We are family-backed businesses with strong values at the core. We love our work. And while in the coming months we will certainly find things that divide us, it is our belief that we will find far more that unites us.”