Shipping and Ferries

SHIPPING IS AN INDUSTRY OF THE FUTURE

Transport continues to play a major role in the ongoing globalisation. With the technology shifts taking place, maritime transport is a prerequisite for creating sustainable communities. This is evident from continuing growth in demand for intercontinental maritime transport, and particularly for regional maritime transport.

During the year, Stena has strengthened the product offering by acquiring new ferries for Stena Line, taking delivery of the majority of the IMOIIMAX series ordered through Stena Bulk and acquiring the remaining 50 percent of Stena Weco. We have also invested in developing our logistics competence with measures such as the development of additional services in Northern Marine Group, particularly a result of the previous acquisition of Clyde Group. In addition, we have established new warehouses in Singapore, Shanghai and Rotterdam, and created customer value for basic manufacturers of goods around the world.

OVERCAPACITY, A MAJOR CHALLENGE

These initiatives leave us better equipped to meet the new challenges and opportunities we face in terms of increased sustainability requirements for all types of transport, China’s growing global dominance and new technology’s potential to streamline and possibly restructure our global transport systems.

Our largest challenges still lie in the fact that global overcapacity in the shipbuilding industry has led to extensive new construction and with it a sharp increase in capacity. Supply of tonnage is increasing again and, in combination with the ongoing transformation in certain parts of the logistics chain, this is affecting market conditions.

We respond to these challenges by only investing counter-­cyclically, and developing our own understanding of the transport value chain. We are now concentrating our efforts on strengthening logistics skills both in Europe and globally. At the same time, we are working to create and strengthen our co-operation network with different partners. 

An example of this can be seen in technology, where we and other stakeholders employ 150 development engineers in Sweden and about 50 engineers based in Glasgow in a competence network to develop new technology. In many ways, this reflects the entrepreneurial culture and the fundamental values on which the company is based. It also enables us to act faster and more widely than we have previously been able to do. Our strategy is summarised in the phrase Ready for anything with a new requirement for curiosity to ensure we are fast, bold and so knowledgeable as to make things simple.

EXTENSIVE OPERATIONAL IMPROVEMENTS

Our overall structure as a conglomerate continues to serve us well. Over the last ten years, as a result of Stena Drilling’s strong results, Stena has been able to build new fleets in both Stena Line and Stena Bulk and develop marine services in Northern Marine Group. With lower oil prices and the present management’s extensive operational improvements, it is now natural for Stena Line to perform well and deliver the desired results. We are now in a phase where Stena Line and other operations will be able to lead us through a period of more challenging market conditions for offshore drilling. Our ability to ensure that, operationally, our customers are offered the best solutions in terms of reliability and high safety, enables us to manage the cyclicality that has characterised our industry for many hundreds of years.

WATERWAYS ARE SUSTAINABLE WAYS

Our primary focus is to ensure that our services respond to today’s challenges. This means that we are continuing our technical work by experimenting with new fuels to move us closer to our long-term vision of environmentally neutral ­transport. We welcome stricter international environmental regulations that give us comparative benefits.

We believe that our waterways are the solution for sustainable communities, as this infrastructure has an almost unlimited capacity. The waterways give rise to minimal additional costs for infrastructure and, from an emissions perspective, are the most efficient way of transporting goods. As we build sustainable cities and communities, ferry traffic and other shipping are therefore of key importance.

Our challenge lies in leading technical development. We must also ensure that our customers are offered the most cost-effective way of transporting their goods. We therefore need to understand an increasingly large part of the total value chain in order to increase our efficiency and ensure that we are integrated into future transport solutions. New technology offers brand new opportunities to create transparency, reduce costs and shorten lead times.

AN EXCITING TIME

In conclusion, I am particularly pleased that we have strengthened our position in Asia during the year by positive development of the cooperation on intermediate tankers through the company Golden Agri-Stena and the opening of a new office in Dubai. Furthermore, we have made extensive establishments in China, India and Singapore through Northern Marine Group and the steady development of local senior expertise in these important future markets for the Group.

I find it hard to imagine a more exciting time in which to be active in the global transport and logistics industry. Shipping has never been in a better position than today to continue transporting 90 percent of the goods that are traded on our planet.

Carl-Johan Hagman
Head of Stena Shipping and Ferries

Global shipbuilding capacity

The global shipbuilding industry is being affected by overcapacity, due to reduced demand and massive expansion in China. China has been the world's largest shipbuilding nation since 2010.

 

STRONGER LEADERSHIP

Stena’s success is partly based on the ability to be fast, bold and simple. To grasp opportunities and deal with setbacks, managers and specialists must be ready and equipped. The Stena Leadership Programme and Grow Leadership Programme continued during the year, and in Stena Turntable, ten of the company’s most senior managers were assigned a young mentor from the start-up community.

“Under the programmes, they exchange experiences and explore new business ideas. We run these and other programmes with a view to making people and opportunities more visible,” says Eva Hansdotter, Director People & Organisational Excellence.

“Another initiative is about digital transformation and how we can benefit from new technology,” says Eva. This work has been conducted in a network organisation with internal and external experts who have worked together on different concept projects in different parts of the organisation.

Eva Hansdotter
Director People & Organisational Excellence