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DFDS and LD join forces for Channel

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DFDS and Louis Dreyfus Armateurs have set up a joint company for routes across the Channel and France-Tunisia. The new company is expected to start operations on 1 July 2012 and DFDS will own 82 per cent and LDA 18 per cent.

The operation will run nine routes on the Channel and one between France and Tunisia, including Dover-Dunkirk (currently DFDS); Dover-Calais (DFDS & LD Lines in partnership); Portsmouth-Le Havre (currently LD Lines); Newhaven-Dieppe (currently LD Lines); and Marseille-Tunis (currently LD Lines).

LD Lines is a French ferry company and a 100 per cent owned subsidiary of Louis Dreyfus Armateurs. It was established in 2003 and currently operates four routes of which one route, St. Nazaire-Gijon, will not be included in the joint venture. LD Lines will transfer four chartered ships and one owned ship to the joint venture.

DFDS operates a network of 25 ferry routes. In the Channel, DFDS operates three ships on the Dover-Dunkirk route and, in partnership with LD Lines, two ships on the recently- launched Dover-Calais route. Both operations will be transferred to the new company.

 “The new company expands DFDS’ route network in line with DFDS’ strategy of creating a European shipping and logistics network,” says Niels Smedegaard, President & CEO  of the DFDS Group. “By combining the capabilities and operations of LD Lines and DFDS, a new and stronger company is formed that is well positioned to deliver the ferry services that are required by our customers in the very competitive market on the Channel.”

“This new company confirms our strategy to create a European leader in the Channel ferry business. We strongly believe that this is the right answer to the many challenges the industry has to cope with and are confident this fully integrated network will offer our clients a unique flexibility” says Gildas Maire, President of LD Lines.

www.dfdsgroup.com

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