A five-month voyage around the world has come to an end – but the journey towards improved diversity and inclusion continues.

Rainbow container world tour

In July 2020, two fully functional Maersk containers were skillfully painted with a rainbow to join Maersk’s fleet, and in March this year, they embarked on their first World Tour.

First part of the journey for the 40 and 20-foot rainbow containers was aboard the Maersk Edmonton from APM Terminals Pier 400 in Los Angeles to Yokohama. The containers have stopped at several locations across Asia and Europe, before finally ending their tour in Denmark for Copenhagen Pride 2021.

During their World Tour, the containers have been made available to A.P. Moller Maersk employees during strategic points in its journey for them to sign – and around the world, many have taken the chance to share their hopes for a future of improved diversity and inclusion.

When we started the world tour, we were excited. But it is safe to say that the engagement and the feedback that we have received from colleagues and customers during the journey has far exceeded our expectations. While the outside of these containers represent the company’s stand on diversity and inclusion, the inside of the containers represent our colleagues’ personal pledge – and I am so proud to see how many have actually taken the chance to share their commitment.

Rachel Osikoya
Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Maersk

Containers that unite

Maersk’s rainbow containers have served as a symbol of inclusion and diversity, boldly sharing with the world the company’s stand on creating a culture where all employees, partners, and customers feel welcomed and can be themselves without judgment.

They not only serve as a symbol for the company. Maersk’s clients have also showed interest in the use of these rainbow containers to move their goods around the world, and during the tour they have visited a range of customer sites.

“The response from our customers has been overwhelming, with many wanting to be part of the tour and others asking for more rainbow containers,” shares Rob Townley, Regional Head of Special Project Logistics, and one of the initiators of the World Tour. “These containers serve as a reminder to those who feel different or like they don’t belong that they are not alone, and someone, somewhere, is standing with them and accepts them regardless of their race, gender, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or disability. We are therefore working to assess if and how we can meet the request from our customers for more rainbow containers.”

These containers serve as a reminder to those who feel different or like they don’t belong that they are not alone, and someone, somewhere, is standing with them and accepts them regardless of their race, gender, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or disability. We are therefore working to assess if and how we can meet the request from our customers for more rainbow containers.

Rob Townley
Regional Head of Special Project Logistics

On the below, you can see some of the feedback that we have received from customers.

Feedback from our customers - statements from Puma and LESCHACO

Diversity and inclusion are key components in our working culture and are expressed in our employer value BE YOU. It fosters innovation and leads to better results and smarter ideas. With our partner MAERSK we share these values. We were pleased the MAERSK rainbow container stopped by at the PUMA headquarters in frame of our Pride Month celebrations. The initiative sparked an open discourse on what diversity & inclusion means for everyone. Our employees and customers were delighted to show their support and signed the inside of the container

Dietmar Knoess
Global Director People & Organization at PUMA

Leschaco is committed towards diversity and inclusion and proud to join Maersk in promoting these values across the World. The rainbow containers are embodying this message beautifully by uniting the logistics community along their journey across different countries and cultures, meeting friends of different social and ethnical backgrounds, with different genders, religious believes or sexual orientations.

Constantin Conrad
Chief Digital Officer at Leschaco
Soren Skou and Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen

The containers ended their journey in Copenhagen for the WorldPride. Here Soren Skou was joined by Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, CEO of Novo Nordisk, to sign the container and to talk about why we must continue to take action and create change for increased diversity and inclusion.

The journey continues

Even if the world tour is now coming to an end, the journey towards increased diversity and inclusion continues. The Rainbow Containers still have a few customer events scheduled, after which they will become part of Maersk’s regular container fleet – continuing to serve our customers.
The containers ended their journey in Copenhagen for the WorldPride. Here Soren Skou was joined by Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, CEO of Novo Nordisk, to sign the container and to talk about why we must continue to take action and create change for increased diversity and inclusion.

“In Maersk, we have taken a global stand on creating a workplace with an equitable and inclusive workplace for all, which is embedded in our commitment to ensuring human rights for all,” says Rachel Osikoya. “The Rainbow Containers are a good illustration of this commitment – and like them, we will in Maersk continue our journey to continuously improve the way we work with diversity and inclusion, allowing you to always be your authentic self, when you come into work.”

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