Awilco becomes world’s newest container shipowner

Container shipping has a new owner hailing from Oslo.

Awilco Container has debuted as a non-vessel operating owner, taking four classic panamaxes, the 4,380 teu, AS Magnolia, as well as its sisterships AS Mariella and AS Mariana and the slightly smaller 4,250 teu AS Morgana.

These four ships, currently on charter to Maersk Line, have been bought at what analysts at Alphaliner report as just under $9m per ship.

Awilco has also bought two more ships, the 4,231 teu David Rickmers and Samuel Rickmers in partnership with US financier Wilbur Ross’ Transportation Recovery Fund (TRF). Both vessels are shared 50/50 by Awilco and TRF. They are currently on charter to Zim.

According to Alphaliner, Awilco is the shipping and offshore arm of Oslo-based Awilhelmsen, a private investment company with interests in the shipping, cruise, real estate, retail and financial investment sectors.

It is better known for its involvement in the VLCC sector through its participation in Awilco Eco Tankers Holding, jointly with TRF, the LNG market through its involvement in Awilco LNG and in the offshore sector through Awilco Drilling. The forerunner company of Awilhelmsen was established in 1939 by shipowner Anders Wilhelmsen.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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