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Ocean freight giant Maersk Line buys rival company for US$4 billion

Ocean freight giant Maersk Line buys rival company for US$4 billion article image

Maersk Line, the world's largest container shipping line, will acquire German rival Hamburg Süd for more than US$4 billion.

The cash purchase follows approval from both company boards.

Maersk Line, part of the Danish conglomerate A.P. Moller-Maersk, announced plans to buy Hamburg Süd late last year.

The deal combines the Number 1 and Number 7 world ranked ocean container shippers.

The companies would feature a combined fleet of 743 container vessels and about 3.9 million twenty-foot equivalent units – almost 19 percent share of global capacity.

Hamburg Süd plans to maintain its own operations along with a presence in its namesake German city.

Officials said the deal would enable between $350 million and $400 million in annual savings along with more journeys and port calls and faster transit times.

"The acquisition is cementing our position as the largest and leading carrier in container shipping and it will provide great opportunities for the employees of both companies,”

Maersk Line and A.P. Moller-Maersk CEO Søren Skou said in a statement.

The companies expect the deal to close by the end of the year pending regulatory approval.

Antitrust authorities in the US and European Union approved the merger in March and April, respectively.

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