City & Corporate: Moeller-Maersk hires FD for offer

COPENHAGEN: Danish container shipping line AP Moeller-Maersk has briefed Financial Dynamics on its £1.7bn agreed offer for Royal P&O Nedlloyd.

FD chief executive Charles Watson leads the team advising AP Moeller-Maersk on the deal, which will cement the company's grip on the international container shipping market.

AP Moeller-Maersk and P&O Nedlloyd confirmed they were in talks last Wednesday before announcing an agreement for a conditional public offer the following day.

P&O Nedlloyd has retained Tulchan Communications for more than a year in anticipation of consolidation in the industry.

AP Moeller-Maersk is the world's largest container shipping line and its domination of the market has until now meant that smaller companies have had to be part of one of the three main alliances to compete effectively.

P&O Nedlloyd has been part of Grand Alliance, one of the shipping line consortia that share capacity, since 1997. The acquisition of the company by AP Moeller-Maersk, which does not belong to any of the alliances, is likely to end P&O Nedlloyd's relationship with the alliance.

The deal could also spark further consolidation as rivals merge to compete with AP Moeller-Maersk.

P&O Nedlloyd was formed in 1997 through a joint venture between UK shipping line P&O and its Dutch rival Royal Nedlloyd.

After P&O sold its 25 per cent stake, P&O Nedlloyd became independent via a reverse takeover.

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