In response to the challenging market conditions brought on by COVID-19 last year, we put 16 of our vessels into cold lay-up. Now, as we enter 2021, we’re returning up to nine of these vessels to the sea, to replace the capacity we currently source through short-time charters.
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic saw a significant reduction in demand for cargo-carrying capacity across the globe. In response, we made the decision to recycle four vessels in our 123-strong fleet and put others into cold lay-up, essentially taking them out of service as we weathered the storm.
While the pandemic is still very much part of our reality, reduced capacity and rising rates in the charter market have led to the decision to bring up to nine of our vessels back into service so we can continue to deliver competitive solutions for our customers.
Plans are in place to reactivate these vessels during the first quarter of the year to replace capacity currently sourced through short-term charters. “Flexibility in the fleet has been a core strategic choice since the inception of Wallenius Wilhelmsen, ensuring our ability to adjust the fleet to our needs and shifting market demand,” said Craig Jasienski, CEO of Wallenius Wilhelmsen.
To further support flexibility in the fleet, later this year we will also be welcoming our fourth HERO vessel, the last newbuilding in our HERO series.