Olaf von Maydell, the outgoing managing director for Asia with Hapag-Lloyd AG, said he is leaving the German liner company under his own steam.
Mr. Maydell said he was not seeking to find a job outside Hapag-Lloyd, but that the Hamburg-based Hara Line GmbH simply offered him greater opportunity."I didn't volunteer. It was offered," Mr. Maydell said in a telephone interview. (Hapag)'s a super company with a lot of potential. The decision was only related to me." The executive said he will leave around the end of 1992.
Hara is a holding group for several transport-related companies including container handling, ship chartering, ship agency representation and bulk shipping.
Mr. von Maydell initially will head Hara's Buss Group subsidiary as well as holding other responsibilities. Buss Group is made up of several companies located in and around the Port of Hamburg engaged in container terminal operations, inland container depots, stevedoring and container repair.
Mr. von Maydell said he will move over at the end of 1992 after he has finished up work he needs to complete at Hapag-Lloyd.
"There is no fixed time," he said.
Mr. von Maydell, who has been with Hapag-Lloyd more than 30 years, stressed that the decision was in no way reflected on his current employer. Rather, it was based on the attraction of new challenges, he said.
The well-respected shipping official who has held many of the top jobs within Hapag-Lloyd said part of the appeal of the Hara job was the company's mix of businesses and their strong potential.
"I think it will be very interesting and a challenge to run them," he said.
Mr. von Maydell started in Germany with Hapag-Lloyd running the company's stevedoring operations and was eventually transferred into fleet management. In the 1980s, he was promoted to president of the company's Americas division, based in Staten Island, N.Y. In 1990, Mr. von Maydell moved to Singapore to head the Asia division.
Reflecting on the containership market, Mr. von Maydell said there will be fewer players in the future. Those companies that survive will have the lowest costs either by taking advantage of economies of scale or being smarter than their competitors, he said.