Maritime Research

Container Shipping 2nd Edition Special Report - A Financial Health Check

June 2017

Buy now

Container industry risk assessment


The court receivership of Hanjin Shipping sent shock waves through the container shipping industry and even now the reverberations continue through the global supply chains ecosystem. The debacle affected not only shippers, but a vast array of vendors from ship leasing companies, port operators, container box lessors and suppliers - all felt the impact. Following these events our 2nd Edition Financial Health-Check report assesses the current state of each of the key players in the sector and identifies those over which warning signals continue to flash.


In this 2nd Edition special report, Container Shipping - A Financial Health Check - Macros and Micros, analysts at Drewry Financial Research Services Ltd have updated their independent assessment of the financial health of the industry.


Key findings from the analysis are:

  • Industry debt situation should improve as industry profitability returns. In our sample of 12 container lines, few operators have already started seeing improvements but those towards the bottom of our risk table have plenty of work ahead to mend their balance sheets.
  • Our analysis of the financial health of the operators show slight improvements are already underway. Most are likely to see better balance sheet and credit metrics if the improving profitability levels were to sustain over the next few years.

  • Gearing levels apart, the container shipping industry has remained afflicted with severe debt after investing heavily during the boom years; the expectation of a recovery in 2017 though is expected to ease the situation. Based on 1Q17 data, industry debt is already in the process of establishing a declining trend.

  • Most operators are finally reining in their capital expenses, indicating that the race to add larger vessels may be coming to an end. Similar to leverage, interest coverage has improved, as companies have reduced expenses (increasing EBITDA) and debt.

Drewry Financial Research uses a simple traffic light system to rank companies under according to their risk profiles.

We rank each company’s risk according to the following weighted parameters: balance sheet strength (45%), income growth (15%), diversification (10%), transparency (15%) and management/control (15%).

More Information

Companies included:

  • A.P. Moller Maersk ( Maersk Line)
  • China Shipping Holdings
  • Evergreen Marine Corp
  • Hapag-Lloyd AG
  • Hyundai Merchant Marine
  • Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd
  • Mitsui OSK Lines Ltd
  • Nippon Yusen KK
  • Wan Hai
  • Yang Ming


Chainalytics and Drewry partner to create Ocean Buying Group for small and medium sized shippers

Chainalytics and Drewry partner to create Ocean Buying Group for small and medium sized shippers
Chainalytics and Drewry announce the launch of Ocean Buying Group addressing the ocean freight procurement needs of small and
medium sized shippers.

Maritime Financial Model Portfolio Report - March 2018 - now available

Our model portfolio gained 2.8% between November 2017 and February 2018, outperforming its sector-specific benchmark – Bloomberg’s BI SHIP (down 4.5%)

Better days ahead for VLGC shipowners

A slowdown in fleet growth should begin the recovery cycle from the second half of 2018, according to Drewry’s latest LPG Forecaster.

Depressed outlook for long-haul routes in chemical shipping market

Chemical shipping freight rates will weaken through 2018 due to the depressed outlook on overtonnaged long haul routes, according to Drewry’s latest Chemical Forecaster.


Intermodal Asia 2018

Tim Power to attend as a keynote speaker at the opening forum ’Overview of the Container Shipping Market’.

Project Cargo Summit

Susan Oatway to discuss the heavy lift and MPV shipping markets.