NEW YORK – Capital Link’s Annual German Maritime Forum took place on January 28, in digital form, with great success attracting over 1,600 participants from all over the world. The event was held in partnership with DNV GL and with the support of the German Shipowners’ Association (VDR), and enjoyed the overwhelming welcome and receptiveness both from the German and the global maritime communities.
Germany commands the fifth largest merchant fleet in the world and boasts the second largest container fleet with 14.4% market share by TEU. With 316 companies and 2,140 vessels, German Shipping plays a pivotal role in the European and global supply chain. The German maritime community has gone through significant change and transformation across the board (shipowning, shipmanagement, finance and more) further accelerated by regulation, technology, market forces and the pandemic.
The forum featured German industry leaders on the various panels sharing their insight on issues specific to the German Maritime Community/Cluster and also on critical global industry topics. The digital nature of the event opens it to a global audience and makes this approach highly relevant and effective.
Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, CEO – DNV GL Maritime, Conference Chairman, gave the welcoming remarks, noting that “Bound as we are by the same disruptive forces of global transformation, it is vital that we pull together to confront common challenges.” He added, “From Hamburg to Shanghai, the doors to our offices are always open for those who would like to discuss how we can help ensure their fleet’s safe and intelligent transition into this new era.”
Nicolas Bornozis, President – Capital Link, stated that this inaugural German Maritime forum surpassed all expectations reflecting the overwhelming welcome, response and receptiveness both from the German and the global maritime communities. He highlighted the top level agenda with an amazing gathering of leaders from the German shipping industry and a tremendous sign up of delegates from all over the world. This forum aims to showcase both the industry and though leadership of the German Maritime community and its prospects and outlook in a fast developing global industry. Bornozis paid special tribute to the support and partnership with DNVGL underscoring the strong and fruitful cooperation between the two organizations across all Capital Link’s Forums around the world. He also thanked the German Shipowners’ Association and the Forum sponsors, media partners and supporting organizations that helped with the materialization of this event. The intention of Capital Link is to repeat this forum on an annual basis.
Among the speakers, Ilias Katsoulis, Head of Shipping – Structured Credit – Deutsche Bank, stated: “There is no doubt that the German bank ship finance market has undergone significant change in the last decade. However, as the shipping industry remains important in Germany, today local banks continue providing capital to ship owners both in Germany and abroad. Stakeholders in the shipping industry will continue to adapt to the impact of banking regulations such as CRRII, and will face challenges in such a dynamic market as well as opportunities such as transitioning to greener shipping. Deutsche Bank remains an active lender in shipping and is ready to support clients as they navigate the challenges and opportunities.”
Elias Sakellis, CEO – Australis Maritime, said: “Congratulations to Capital Link for yet another successful event. From Australis Maritime’s perspective we believe that the ship financing market developments over the last few years, and in particular the last 12 months, have clearly evidenced the need for alternative financing to serve the global shipowning community. In this respect, Hamburg is unquestionably in pole position to become one of the key hubs for such alternative financing for two key reasons: Firstly, Hamburg has a long tradition and home grown talent in terms of ship financing, and therefore the human capital and the experience is available to grow this product. Secondly, Hamburg is also in the process of transforming itself into a global center for high-quality 3rd party technical management serving institutional but also small and medium sized owners, which in turn creates very interesting origination synergies for the alternative financing product. At Australis Maritime we are very fortunate to have an office in Hamburg, and are looking forward to continuing to work with the local owners, advisors, and banks for years to come.”
More information and replays are available online: