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A.P. Møller Holding intends to own - partly or as a majority shareholder - several of the Maersk-related activities directly, but this will not happen overnight, explained Ane Maersk Mc-Kinney Uggla, a board member of A.P. Moller Maersk and A.P. Møller Holding A/S.
While A.P. Moller-Maersk has plans to narrow its focus to transportation and logistics, the foundation that owns a controlling stake in the company will move in its own direction, Ane Maersk Mc-Kinney Uggla said in the company’s most recent annual magazine, noting the need for the foundation to remain diversified.
Uggla is both a board member of A.P. Moller Maersk and A.P. Møller Holding A/S, the investment company created in 2013 to manage the holdings of the company-affiliated Danish foundation A.P. Møller og Hustru Chastine Mc-Kinney Møllers Fond til almene Formaal.
“We are redefining the group with the establishment of A.P. Møller Holding as the ‘mother company’ of the Maersk activities,” Uggla said in the magazine article.
Last year, A.P. Moller-Maersk said it will retain five of its businesses: Maersk Line, APM Terminals, the logistics company DAMCO, tug operator Svitzer and Maersk Container Industries, a maker of containers.
In addition, the conglomerate plans to “separate out” four other oil and gas businesses - Maersk Oil, Maersk Drilling, Maersk Supply Service and Maersk Tankers - by the end of 2018.
“A.P. Møller Holding intends to secure the long-term viability of the Maersk activities and of Danske Bank," Uggla said.
“Going forward, A.P. Møller Holding intends to own - partly or as a majority shareholder - several of the Maersk-related activities directly," she said. "This will not happen overnight but during the next few years, based on a process decided by the board of A.P. Moller-Maersk.
“We will ensure that we hold a diversified and financially robust portfolio - to be able to sustain unexpected negative developments," she added. "And finally, we will continue building new businesses - in our portfolio companies as well as separately in A.P. Møller Holding.”
A good example of the difference in thinking that may arise between the Maersk conglomerate and the foundation is illustrated by Danske Bank.
When Maersk decided to sell its shares in the bank in 2015 and provide shareholders with an extraordinary cash dividend equal in value to its stake in the bank, the foundation took a different tack and increased its share capital so that it now owns 20 percent of the bank, about what A.P. Moller-Maersk owned prior to the sale.
Looking ahead, Uggla noted how new opportunities may arise in the future. In regards to Maersk, she said, “Many new businesses have been launched. Some have failed, some have been divested and others have thrived. In fact, many activities integral to the company we know today did not even exist 60 years ago. The move into the oil business in 1962 and into container shipping in 1973 are just two examples. Another is APM Terminals, which developed out of the container shipping activities over the last 20 years into the $10 billion company it is today.
“It raises the question: How do we create the next APM Terminals or Maersk Oil over the next 10 to 20 years?”
According the “ownership profile” section of A.P. Moller Maersk’s website, A.P. Møller Holding owns 41.51 percent of the share capital and controls 51.23 percent of the votes in the company. Another family fund owns 8.84 percent of shares and controls 13.12 percent of votes.