Soren Skou, the newly appointed CEO of Maersk Line, said his key goals are defending the Danish ocean carrier’s leading world market share and further reducing its costs.
“Maersk Line is in a fairly strong position to gain market share – worldwide and Asia-Europe” Skou said.
“Maersk has the strength to win in the container market … in the ongoing rate war” as it has become very cost competitive over the past three to four years and is delivering new services, including the Daily Maersk, which has differentiated its “offering” from its rivals.
Maersk will continue to cut costs, “a job that never finishes,” but there are no plans to shrink the business, Skou said in a telephone interview from Copenhagen.
Skou said the recently announced alliance between Maersk’s fiercest rivals, France’s CMA CGM and Geneva-based MSC, is “potentially good news” as it spurs the consolidation the industry needs to make “decent” returns. He said it is “frankly much too early” for him to comment on Maersk’s role in consolidation.
But he said the 20 18,000 20-foot equivalent units ships joining Maersk’s fleet in 2014 and 2015 “gives us a substantial competitive advantage over the longer term,” which means the carrier has less need to take over rival lines.
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