According to MANA, “If Maersk Line needs to grow, it doesn’t make sense to order new ships as there are already too many ships in the market,” Rasmussen said. “So if we want to grow, we need to do it through acquisitions so that we don’t flood the market with more ships.”
Maersk Line still has 27 ships in its order book, corresponding to about 12 percent of its current fleet.
Meanwhile, the shipping industry is suffering from falling freight rates caused by a combination of overcapacity and a slowdown in global trade growth.
As recently as 2015, Maersk Line placed orders with ship yards Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., with Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. and with Cosco Shipyard Co. The ships are due for delivery in 2017 and 2018.
The 11 vessels from Daewoo will carry a record 19,630 standard-sized containers and cost $1.8 billion each.
“It has previously made a lot of sense when we went out and ordered specific vessels,” Rasmussen said. But “there’s already a large order book in the market and at the same time, world trade isn’t growing a great deal.”
The stock rose 3.4 percent on Thursday when Maersk revealed a new strategy that includes splitting the conglomerate into a transport and an energy company