Safmarine to merge with Maersk

Safmarine will merge with sister-company Maersk Line in order to cut costs, with 240 redundancies expected.

Shipping line Safmarine has announced it will merge with sister-company Maersk Line, in a move that could see hundreds of redundancies.

The two companies will merge their internal support and management functions to reduce running costs and duplication, Safmarine said.

Safmarine’s brand will be retained the company will still be run as a separate service, in much the same way as Maersk currently does with its regional brands SeaGo Line in Europe and MCC in Asia.

“It is our clear intention to strengthen the Safmarine brand,” said Maersk Liner Business CEO Eivind Kolding.

“Over its long history it has become a force to be reckoned with in its markets and customers value its distinctive approach to deep and lasting relationships.”

As part of the merger the company said it would close its Antwerp head office, as well as regional offices in Antwerp, Shanghai, Dubai, Cape Town, and Mumbai, as well as centre support functions in Singapore and Cape Town.

The closures are expected to mean the loss of 240 staff, said Mr Kolding.

“We are sad to have to consider losing some very strong colleagues, who have made an important contribution to the company and helped change the way we think about shipping,” he said. “All changes are subject to consultation and we are working with our employees to find a fair outcome for everyone affected.”

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