Linklaters advises CSAV on Business Combination Agreement between Hapag-Lloyd and UASC

Linklaters advised Compañía Sud Americana de Vapores S.A. (CSAV) in connection with the conclusion of a Business Combination Agreement between Hapag-Lloyd AG and United Arab Shipping Company (UASC). The Chilean company CSAV with a shareholding of 31.4% is the largest single shareholder of Hapag-Lloyd, which has been listed on the stock exchange since autumn 2015. CSAV, the City of Hamburg and Kühne Maritime GmbH support the transaction as anchor shareholders and have signed a Shareholder Support Agreement with Hapag-Lloyd and UASC.

CSAV, HGV (City of Hamburg) and Kühne Maritime will remain Hapag-Lloyd’s anchor shareholders. UASC’s current majority shareholders, Qatar Holding LLC (QH) and the Public Investment Fund of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (PIF), will become Hapag-Lloyd’s new key shareholders with a shareholding of 14% (QH) and 10% (PIF). With the merger, which is subject to competition law provisions, Hapag-Lloyd and UASC take the next step to further consolidate the container shipping industry.

Following the integration, Hapag-Lloyd will rank among the five largest container shipping lines in the world. The fleet will operate 237 vessels with a total transport capacity of 1.6 million TEU (standard containers). The annual transport volume is expected to be approx. 10 million TEU. In addition, the company will become the largest partner in the new "THE Alliance" – consisting of Hanjin, Hapag-Lloyd, K-Line, Mitsui O.S.K Lines, Nippon Yusen Kaisha and Yang Ming. The alliance will commence operations in April 2017 and cover all East-West trade lanes including Asia-Middle East/Arabian Gulf and Red Sea.

A Linklaters team led by Wolfgang Sturm (Corporate/M&A, Düsseldorf) advised on the transaction. The team also included Sebastian Goslar, Thorsten Henze und Karin Hribar (all Corporate/M&A, Düsseldorf).

For further informatuon, please contact Andreas Fritz.