A.P. MOLLER ACQUIRES TORM LINES
A.P. Moller, the parent company of Maersk Sealand and Safmarine, has acquired the niche African liner operator Torm Lines from A/S Dampskibsselskabet Torm, a diversified Danish shipping company.
The companies have not disclosed the terms of the takeover.
Torm Lines is a long-established operator of container and breakbulk direct services from the U.S. Gulf and East Coast of North America to West Africa. It operates four multipurpose vessels on a direct transatlantic service and a further four vessels on a feeder service along the coast in Africa. The eight ships are all chartered in.
Vagn Lehd Moller, executive vice president of A.P. Moller, said the group has also acquired the right to use the name Torm Lines. Both Maersk Sealand and Safmarine will operate the former Torm Lines services. The group has not decided yet whether to continue to market the service under the name Torm Lines.
'The acquisition of Torm Lines' USA/West Africa service provides us with a number of new opportunities to improve coverage within the container segment and as a strong provider of regular coverage of the breakbulk market in this trade,” Lehd Moller said.
Torm Lines' activities are not incorporated in a separate legal entity. The transaction includes assets with a book value of approximately DKK 7 million (about $800,000).
The net revenue of Torm Lines was DKK581 million ($69 million) in 2001 and pre-tax profit was DKK13 million ($2 million).
Torm Lines directly employs 30 people. The employees working with Torm Lines in Denmark, the United States and West Africa will be offered jobs within Maersk Sealand and Safmarine, according to A.P. Moller.
A/S Dampskibsselskabet Torm said that the sale of Torm Lines follows its policy of focusing on its core business areas, namely product tanker and dry bulk shipping.