This does not alter the fact that 2016 was the umpteenth financial year in a row which was extremely challenging. In mid-2016, the 2015 upswing of the markets in which JR Shipping is active appeared to be short-lived. In particular, the container feeder market saw a steep downward trend. On the one hand, the shipping company blames this on the geo-political unrest, which hampered economic growth. On the other hand, the transition phase which hit the shipping industry hard in 2016 is considered to be the culprit. It was accompanied by radical bankruptcies, mergers and takeovers.
Offshore service market
The operations of the SeaZip Offshore Service fleet, part of the shipping group, were also disappointing. The core market for these operations, which is the construction, operation and maintenance of offshore wind turbine parks, experienced a kind of ‘interim year’. This was not caused by economic factors, though; sector-specific conditions played a role. In 2015, the number of wind turbine parks realised was greater than average and, in many cases, the build-up to new parks required more time than had been expected. Besides that, projects were postponed until 2017 because of anticipated price decreases in the operational sphere. In the meantime, the level of activities has considerably increased again.
Container feeder and multipurpose markets
Pertaining to the container feeder and multipurpose markets, JR Shipping has noticed that the balance between supply and demand has normalised and a considerable market recovery is almost inevitable. At long last, everything points to a lasting economic recovery worldwide. Recovery of the shipping markets will follow in its slipstream. The first half year of 2017 already indicated this, with the qualification that this recovery is still extremely slow. In 2017, JR Shipping Group continues to focus on:
- consolidation of the container feeder fleet
- controlled growth in the market for multipurpose vessels
- operating state-of-the-art offshore service vessels to support the oil and gas industry and the building and maintenance of offshore wind turbine parks
- ship management for outside parties and extraordinary restructuring projects pertaining to container feeder and multipurpose vessels
The shipping group currently operates 15 state-of-the-art container feeders, 4 competitive multipurpose vessels and 6 flexible and sustainably deployable offshore service vessels. For the purpose of any future fleet expansions, the shipping company focusses on ‘opportunity investments’. In that connection, JR Shipping issues JR Shipping Opportunity Bonds. At the issue of this press release, a large part of these bonds has already been launched successfully.
Background information and contact
You will find elaborate information about relevant developments with regard to the shipping company as well as market trends in JR Shipping Today 2016.