Maersk Tankers Consolidates Market Buying Pool Operator Penfield Marine

Maersk tankers
Maersk tankers further expands its pool acquire boutique U.S. operator Penfield Marine (file photo)

Published Jan 8, 2024 2:06 PM by The Maritime Executive


Maersk Tankers reports it closed last week on the acquisition of U.S.-based Penfield Marine, a boutique commercial tanker management company as a further step in the consolidation of the tanker market. Together the two companies will be one of the largest pools of tankers, offering a board fleet of Panamax, Suezmax, and Aframax vessels and representing some of the best-known tanker owners in the industry.

Founded in 2012 and with offices in Connecticut, London, and Singapore, Penfield Marine currently has a total of 83 vessels spread among its three pools. In 2023, they reported adding vessels from companies including Eastern Pacific Shipping, Wah Kwong, Great Eastern Shipping Company of India, Transpetrol Maritime Services of Belgium, and Performance Shipping and Chartworld Shipping of Greece. Its pools include major oil companies and oil traders as chartering customers.

The announcement highlights that the combined company, which will operate as Maersk Tankers, creates a large-scale crude and product tanker company offering pool partners and cargo customers a wider range of services. The combined company will manage around 240 vessels, including approximately 45 vessels owned by affiliated companies.

Together, Maersk Tankers and Penfield Marine will leverage their complementary capabilities to offer a variety of solutions meeting the increasing demand on shipowners to deliver attractive returns and cut emissions. Cargo customers will get access to a broader service range to cover their transportation needs within more segments.

“Penfield Marine has over the years built a solid position and presence in the industry and is a perfect match to Maersk Tankers,” said Tina Revsbech, CEO of Maersk Tankers. “Our combined commercial and operational expertise will allow us to grow our presence as a commercial manager and extend our service offerings within performance optimization and decarbonization to a broader segment of customers and pool partners.”

The nearly 100-year-old Maersk Tankers has evolved its strategy in the past few years selling vessels and exiting its technical business to evolve as a pool operator. In 2023, under new CEO Revsbech, the company has pursued a number of deals including beginning to manage gas tankers and recently ordered as many as 10 large ammonia gas carriers which will be added to the pool when delivered in 2027 from Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries in South Korea. Maersk Tankers reported at the end of 2023 it was managing a fleet of 150 vessels including nearly 30 very large gas carriers VLGCs. It had 40 pool partners.

The operations and regional presence of the two companies will continue combined under the leadership of Revsbech and the Maersk Tankers identity. Tim Brennan, one of the two founders of Penfield, will become COO of the combined company and the other founder Eric Haughn will continue in his current role.