Wallenius starts new forest products JV with SOL
Swedish ro-ro experts Wallenius and Swedish Orient Lines (SOL) have formed a new shipping company to ship forest products and other goods on the North Sea, Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Bothnia. The new company has already signed contracts with two major shippers and ordered four new vessels which will run on LNG.
Wallenius SOL, as the company is named, will operate a service that will connect five ports in the Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Bothnia with Lubeck, Antwerp, Zeebrugge and the United Kingdom.
The new partners have already signed two long-term agreements with paper and packaging manufacturer Metsä Board and Stora Enzo, the second largest forestry company in the world.
To meet the sustainability demands of their first two customers, Wallenius SOL has ordered four new vessels which are built to Finnish/Swedish ice class 1A Super and will run on LNG. The ships will be delivered in 2021.
“We rely on efficient and sustainable transports for our products”, says Knut Hansen, senior vice-president global logistics at Stora Enzo. “The partnership with Wallenius SOL will enhance our opportunities to compete globally, while at the same time the new vessels will reduce environmental impact.”
Although forest products seem to be the main focus of the new shipping company, managing director Ragnar Johansson from Wallenius SOL says the company will also transport other types of cargo.
“Together we can offer a strong mix of experience and competence, which can support a growing forest industry”, Johansson says. “Wallenius has experience from industrial shipping, ship owning, shipbuilding and ship management. SOL brings the competence of logistics from the forest industry and other types of cargo in this geographical area.” Wallenius and SOL bot have extensive experience in shipping breakbulk, ro-ro and project cargo.