Hanjin fallout dominates the headlines

Hanjin fallout dominates the headlines

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock you won’t be surprised to know the top news on this site this week has been the decline and fall of Hanjin Shipping, the largest bankruptcy in container shipping history. We went large on it because we had the right resources on hand to give the story perspective from many, many angles and I am proud to say our coverage has been praised by many, including rival titles.

The four-month restructuring battle to stave off bankruptcy finally came to an end on Wednesday with Hanjin seeking court protection, resulting in a dramatic supply chain implosion during container shipping’s peak season. Santa might struggle to get those lovely LG flatscreen TVs down the chimney this year.

The news prompted the team at Splash to rush out our news ticker, something we tend only to do for major stories or at events. Expect to see the ticker switch from Hanjin to all things SMM next week as we descend on Hamburg to report from the world’s largest shipping show.

The clutch of Hanjin news stories that topped the hits charts this week were matched over in our Opinion department where Kris Kosmala’s piece entitled Hanjin Shipping and the futility of throwing more fuel on a fire burning out of control was read by thousands of people across the world.

In the Contributions section, campaigning Australian vetinerian Dr Lynn Simpson’s seventh article for Splash was the most read this week. Lynn described the horrendous conditions many seafarers have to endure onboard livestock carriers in yet another dramatic exposé of the sector.

Nevertheless, the week really belonged to Hanjin, a company I have been covering for 16 years. There are a lot of very competent and nice people who work there, let down by people higher up than them in the pecking order and I do feel sorry for them.

“In some ways, I am glad that at least we know the conclusion of this four-month long journey, because things have been so vague for the past few months which drained everyone,” a source at Hanjin’s Seoul HQ confided with me.

Stay tuned to Splash for all the very latest regarding Hanjin – and look out for a 9am Copenhagen time Splash Chat live Q&A on Monday with the team at SeaIntelligence Consulting.

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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3 Comments

  1. George
    September 2, 2016 at 9:25 am

    this is kid stuff
    who remembers Sanko Steamship around 1985? now this is what i call THE shipping corporate bankruptcy

    http://articles.latimes.com/1985-08-14/business/fi-2872_1_tankers

    Nothing is new people, we are just reliving history

  2. Andrew Craig-Bennett
    September 2, 2016 at 3:37 pm

    1986 was an interesting year to be in shipping in Hong Kong…

  3. Brian R. McCaughrin
    September 2, 2016 at 4:09 pm

    This Reporter, Must of been living under a rock himself. #1 Korea Based Hanjin Shipping for Past Two, (2) Years, Has Been Unloading Profitable Operation, To Stay in Container Business, Has Cut its Debt Load From $6.1B, To $4.1B, As Of August 31, 2016, Has Well over $156M of Cash On Board, Has Corporate Bonds Worth Over $1.6B, I, Say Hanjin, Has Excellent Management Team In Place, Who has taken the necessary steps to Stay Ahead of Financial Problems at hand. But When you have Lender Like Korea Development Bank (KDB) With a Loaded Gun Placed at your Head, Forcing You to make quicker changes, and Cant be done, I, Fully Support Hanjin Shipping, Bankruptcy Filing on August 31, 2016, Thank GOD the Korea Bankruptcy Judge On September 1, 2016, Could See The Positive Progress Hanjin Shipping, Was making, and Now Has Given Hanjin Shipping Owners More time, Till November 25, 2016, To come up with Plan to Get the Company on Even Keel.