The name of Norasia is set to disappear as a marketing brand of parent company, Compania Sud-Americana de Vapores (CSAV) "within a month" according to close sources.
It's understood that the brand, which was formed in 2000 following the acquisition of Norasia Lines by CSAV, will be dropped, and parent CSAV will take on overall responsibilities for the operations of both the CSAV Norasia East/West services, and the mainstay of the CSAV operations, that of the North/South trades.
Such market belief has been rife for many months, but this is the first instance that a time frame has been put on the speculation.
As first reported by PR News Service under Copy 5959, 16 March 09 CSAV has turned to the German bank, HSH Corporate Finance for professional advice and assistance in how to proceed in the way ahead through the present market downturn.
Also, on the agenda of the CSAV visit are believed to be top level talks with German shipowner, Peter Dohle, owner of a series of 12,500 teu vessels for delivery in 2010/2011 on long term charter to CSAV.
It will be recalled that CSAV Norasia suspended its Asia/North Europe (ANE) service at the beginning of this year, and after a short lay up period, redeployed the ex-ANE vessels - between 5,500/6,500 teu capacity - on the Asia/Black Sea (ABS) service, increasing capacity by over 20%. Effectively, the only CSAV Norasia East/West service now covering North Europe, is the India/Middle East/Europe (IMEX) service.
The India/Europe trade has seen the reduction of the size of the ISES consortium that previously involved, Shipping Corporation of India, K Line, YML, MISC, and Zim, to just include SCI, K Line and Yangming, and there is strong belief the consortium maybe reduced in size even further.
Separately, credit agency, Standard & Poor has reduced its long term credit rating of CSAV from B- to BB-, a move that reflects a strong degree of negativity within the market.
CSAV is also considering selling its 13.01% stake in fellow Chilean shipping line, Compania Chilena de Navegacion Interoceanica SA (CCNI), as well as its stake in port logistics company, Agencias Universal (AGUNSA).
Source: PR News/ Copy 5992/ 7 April 2009