January 2006

 pdf version


BRS-Alphaliner report

The following report examines the evolution of the global liner market shares of large carriers.

The liner market shares surveys compiled by BRS-Alphaliner are based on the liner/container shipping fleet monitored at www.alphaliner.com. These market shares assessments are used as a benchmark by the liner shipping industry.

The data shown in this report can be reproduced provided that the source is mentioned.

Between January 2000 and January 2006, the teu capacity deployed on liner trades has risen from 5,150,000 teu to 9,135,000 teu, ie a 77.4% increase, according to BRS-Alphaliner data. It means that in order to simply keep their market shares during that period, carriers had to increase their fleet capacities by 77.4%. Those which failed to invest, or charter, enough to keep the pace have lost market share.

The accompanying graph shows the performances of a selection of carriers among the TOP 30 lines. It is based on the ratio between market shares at 1st January 2000 and 1st January 2006. For example, CSCL market share rose from 1.67% to 3.80%, ie an increase of 126%.

Market shares are deducted from the existing on board teu capacities of carriers, compared with the total capacity effectively deployed on liner trades (these figures take into account cellular ships, multipurpose ships and roro ships which are effectively employed on regular liner services, and they DO NOT include ships which are not operated on liner trades, even if teu fitted). The total market capacity and the carriers market shares are computed daily by BRS-Alphaliner and can be consulted in our TOP 100 page.



Notes on the ranking : Merger & Acquisitions 2000-2005

A.P. Möller (APM) bought Torm Liner service (2002) and Royal P&O Nedlloyd (2005).
 > P&O Nedlloyd bought Farrell Line (2000).
CMA CGM bought MacAndrews (2002) and Delmas (2005)
>Delmas took an 80% stake in the liner arm of Setramar Navigazione (2001).
Evergreen Group has created Hatsu Marine Ltd in 2002.
Hapag-Lloyd sold Rickmers Linie in 2000 and bought CP Ships in 2005.
>CP Ships bought took full control of Lykes and TMM (2000) and bought Christensen Canada-Africa Line (2000) and Italia di Navigazione (2002).
CSAV bought Norasia (2000) and Norsul container activities (2002).
Hamburg-Süd bought Ellerman Line (2002) and Kien Hung Line (2003).
CSCL was formed in mid-1997 by the China Shg Group.
SYMS was formed in 1985 and entered the international trade in 1999.
Costa Container Lines took over the deep sea liner trades of Gilnavi srl di Navigazione (2004).
Choyang Line was bankrupted in 2001.

Source: BRS-Alphaliner

The three rising stars of this decade so far are CMA CGM, CSCL and Hapag-Lloyd.

CMA CGM logged a market share rise of 133%, with its share climbing from 2.4% to 5.6% during the past 6 years. Organic growth counts for more than 80% of this figure while the 2005 purchase of Delmas contributes to less than 20%. At the same time, CSCL has more than doubled its market share from 1.7% to 3.8%, only through organic growth. As for Hapag-Lloyd, its market share grew from 2.0% to 4.5%. The 2005 purchase of CP Ships counts for around three quarters of this growth. Without the CP Ships contribution, Hapag-Lloyd would have seen its market share growing from 2.0% to 2.5%.

MSC comes at the fourth place with a share which has almost doubled as it rose from 4.4% to 8.6%. During the period 2000-2006, MSC has climbed from the fifth rank to the second rank in the TOP carriers league, with a trebling in fleet capacity.

Next comes the CSAV Group, with a share which has risen from 1.4% to 2.6%, partly thanks to the purchase of Norasia in 2000 and the Norsul liner services in 2002, and partly to organic growth.

Although it remains at the top slot in terms of fleet capacity, the AP Möller-Maersk Group comes at the eighth position for market share growth, a rank achieved thanks to the 2005 purchase of Royal P&O Nedlloyd which allowed it to boost its market share from 12.5% to 18% overnight, corresponding to an increase of 51% compared with January 2000. Prior to the PONL purchase, the Maersk market share had been stagnating at around 12% since January 2000 (and incidentally, the PONL market share was stagnating as well). Despite this huge jump, it still lagging behind MSC, its closest rival in fleet capacity terms. Maersk is by far the largest carrier with a fleet reaching 1.66 Mteu, almost twice the size of MSC.

Some carriers with a strong regional bias are also doing well, although for them, the concept of global market share is of low significance. IRIS Lines, Hamburg-Süd Group and PIL have gained significant market shares in global terms, which also means that their regional market shares has grown still stronger.

Two carriers heavily involved in feeder trades have also kept well the pace, RCL and Sea Consortium. They managed to increase their market share by 4% and 10% respectively (although for RCL, its efforts to develop its own common carrier services have also helped).

Japanese lines NYK, MOL and K Line have managed to maintain more or less their shares, and are no longer as expansive as they used to be.

Those who win market share get it of course at the expense of rivals. For example, the Evergreen Group saw its market share diminished by 15%, down from 6.2% to 5.2%. Evergreen was ranked in second position in 2000 with a fleet of 318,000 teu. It has since been relegated to the fourth slot despite a growth to 478,000 teu.

COSCO Container Lines has seen its share decrease by nine points since 2000 but is now strongly reacting and this slide has come to a halt over the past 18 months. It is now on the rising slope again, an interesting trend as it has been listed on the HKSE in June 2005.

Korean carriers Hanjin Shipping (including Senator Linie) and Hyundai Merchant Marine have suffered of the post-1997 financial crisis. They were at the time the shipping divisions of heavily indebted chaebols, which had to slash expenses. The result is that newbuilding programs have been minimal. They are at least still there, which is not the case of independent compatriot Choyang Line, which disappeared in 2001.

A few regional players have also losed grip. UASC and MISC have each one lost 45% in relative importance. UASC did not invest, and it has waited March 2005 to launch a construction program for eight ships of 6,800 teu. MISC has put the emphasis on energy transportation and has not received a single containership since the late 1990s, and its orderbook is limited to 16,000 teu. Africa specialist Delmas has seen its market share dropping by 40% during the 5.5 years preceding its purchase by CMA CGM. Delmas has been hit by the low growth caracterising Africa and by a lack of interest by parent company Bolloré.

Among smaller carriers, Costa Container Lines built-up a consistent market share on American trades, boosting its overall presence from insignificant to 0.4% while the China Navigation Co (Swire Group) strengthened its presence on the South Pacific markets. On their side, Chinese regional carriers SYMS and SITC have made their place. SYMS has even entered the TOP 30 in December with its fleet passing the 32,000 teu mark. SYMS launched its first international services in 1999.

It is also interesting to see the pace at which the concentration is going. The Top 10 carriers had a combined market share of 49.3% in January 2000. It now stands at 60% (The Top 10 fleet has more than doubled, from 2.54 Mteu to 5.48 Mteu). Their combined market share has thus risen by 21.7%. At the other end of the scale, the fleets of carriers ranked 51 to 100 has stagnated at just under 400,000 teu, with a resulting loss of almost 45% in market share (from 7.7% in 2000 to 4.3% in 2006). In the attached graph, we have inserted the rise in market shares of groups of carriers (Top 10 carriers, carriers ranked 11 to 25, etc.).

> See the accompanying graph, which speaks for itself.

See also our May 2005 survey, which shows the evolution of market shares prior to the second half 2005 acquisition wave.





contact us: