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Bulkers instead of container ships: HMM changes strategy

HMM, South Korea’s leading shipping company, is up for sale. However, this does not prevent the company from diversifying and expanding its fleet.

The container business is suffering from the current market weakness, as is the case with all other competitors. The Koreans are therefore turning their attention to other segments, including the dry bulk sector. [ds_preview]

According to HMM, it plans to almost double its bulker fleet over the next two years. The number of ships is to increase from 35 today to 55. Charter agreements for four newbuildings worth almost $1 billion have just been signed. The agreement extends over 16 years until 2042.

HMM also focuses on MPP, car carriers and gas tankers

The Koreans have also ordered four multipurpose vessels and entered the car carrier segment with an order for three PCTCs in China. With Hyundai LNG Shipping, for which a bid has been submitted, the gas tanker business is to be expanded.

However, the future of the shipping company is still unclear. The second round of bidding for the privatization has only just begun. The Harim Group with its subsidiary Pan Ocean and the logistics companies LX Holdings and Dongwon Group are still in the running. The shares of two Korean state banks are up for sale. Hamburg-based Hapag-Lloyd, which operates together with HMM in “THE Alliance”, was disinvited after the first bidding round.

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