Wilhelmsen Ship Management signed a deal to acquire a majority stake in Hamburg-based Ahrenkiel Tankers, resulting in Wilhelmsen Ship Management taking over the management of five tankers and gaining 80% ownership of Ahrenkiel Tankers. The remaining 20% is held by existing owners MPC Capital Group.
Ahrenkiel Tankers will be rebranded as Barber Ship Management.
It marks the first step by Wilhelmsen Ship Management after its earlier decision to re-enter the tanker segment following a decade-long absence, while also reviving the Barber name that originally formed the basis for the company’s present ship management business.
“This acquisition is a clear statement of our intent to expand in the tanker segment,” says Carl Schou, chief executive officer and president of Wilhelmsen Ship Management.
Wilhelmsen Ship Management was originally named Barber Ship Management Ltd when it was first incorporated in Hong Kong in 1975.
Wilhelmsen Ship Management exited the tanker market in 2009 with the sale of its former subsidiary International Tanker Management (ITM) but reversed this decision two years ago due to an improved regulatory regime for tankers. Barber Ship Management will now serve as Wilhelmsen’s new specialised management arm for the tanker segment following the transaction, effective from 1 January this year.