AsiaContainersMiddle East

UASC dismisses interest in buying NOL as rumours

Another containerline has dismissed links to buying out Singapore’s Neptune Orient Lines (NOL).

Reports emerged last month that Temasek, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, was looking to offload its 65% stake in locally listed NOL, which runs containerline APL, something NOL has not denied.

Since then Splash has been in touch with many leading contenders to buy out NOL, all of whom have denied they are interested in buying out the company. Lately fast growing United Arab Shipping Co (UASC) has been the latest candidate deemed most likely to buy out the Singapore line. UASC is the world’s fastest growing containerline, inking series after series of orders for giant containerships which has, according to French box analysts Alphaliner, propelled it up to 15th place in the global box league rankings with a fleet containing 442,000 slots including the ships on order, about 120,000 less than APL. Combined the pair would have more than 1m slots placing them fourth in thje world behind Maersk, MSC and CMA CGM.

A Splash reader commented on the NOL acquisition: “One carrier that may be interested is UASC. It has the funds, and the desire to grow in the transpacific trade, APL’s halo market.”

However, a spokesperson from UASC’s communication department told Splash: “Regarding NOL, we have received quite a lot of queries on this recently. We are not issuing any comments as this is just a rumour.”


With additional reporting by Katherine Si

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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