Bulk shipping company Korea Line Corp. was chosen by the Korean government as the preferred bidder for the assets of bankrupt container line company Hanjin Shipping Co.'s business between Asia and the U.S., beating out container line Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), according to media reports today.
Korea Line, which is not currently operating containerships, prevailed because it submitted a better financial proposal and wouldn't lay off Hanjin employees, according to media reports.
Hanjin, the world's seventh largest container line, filed for court receivership on Aug.31 after suffering massive losses due to overcapacity, low container rates, and subpar global demand. At the time, the Korean government directed HMM to form a task force to review a possible acquisition of Hanjin's assets.
Hanjin was believed to have controlled 8 percent of the Asia-to-U.S. eastbound container line trade, and about 3 percent of global container trade. Its fleet has been reduced to 14 ships, about a tenth of its former size, after returning most of the chartered vessels to owners.