Maersk to cut at least 10,000 jobs - GulfToday

Maersk to cut at least 10,000 jobs


The cargo ship of shipping company Maersk is loaded at a container terminal at the harbour in Hamburg, Germany. Reuters

Shipping group A.P. Moller-Maersk, reported a steep drop in third-quarter profit and revenue on Friday and said it would cut at least 10,000 jobs in the face of overcapacity, rising costs and weaker prices.

Maersk, which controls about one-sixth of global container trade, transporting goods for a host of major retailers and consumer goods companies such as Walmart and Nike, flagged a steeper downturn in demand than analysts and investors had expected.

“Our industry is facing a new normal with subdued demand, prices back in line with historical levels and inflationary pressure on our cost base,” CEO Vincent Clerc said in a statement.

“Since the summer, we have seen overcapacity across most regions triggering price drops and no noticeable uptick in ship recycling or idling,” he said.

Shares in the Copenhagen-based group slid 11.1 per cent by 0904 GMT, to their lowest level in three years.

Jyske Bank analyst Morten Holm Enggaard said the share price was mainly hit by Maersk saying it would reconsider whether to continue its share buy-back programme into 2024.

“The only way we can read it is that we have to look into something very bad in 2024, and probably worse than what we had expected,” said Enggaard.

Maersk said it expects global container volumes in its ocean business, its largest segment, to fall by up to 2 per cent this year, primarily as a result of weak consumer demand and destocking by firms following the scramble for goods in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic.

The group already warned in August of a steeper decline in global demand for shipping containers by sea this year.

Maersk said it was in the process of cutting its workforce from 110,000 in January this year to below 100,000, which will result in savings next year of $600 million compared to this year.

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