- Danish shipping group Maersk Line is set to acquire German liner Hamburg Süd from Oetker Group for €3.7 billion.
- The parties signed a sale and purchase agreement in March 2017, and the boards of both parties approved the deal in late April 2017.
- Maersk is financing the deal with a syndicated loan.
- Hamburg Süd is the world's seventh largest shipping line and its acquisition will strengthens Maersk's position as the world's biggest freight shipping operator.
- Following the acquisition Maersk's market share will increase to 18.6% from 15.7%.
- The deal signals the end of German family-owned group Oetker's involvement in shipping.
- Consolidation in the global shipping industry has become common recently as overcapacity has driven rates to an all-time low.
- Other recent shipping mergers deals include Hapag-Lloyd's merger with United Arab Shipping Company.
- The deal's completion is subtext to regulatory approval but Maersk expects its to close at the end of 2017.
Ben Naylor - Regional editor