The partnership will initially focus on buying fuel for Cargill and Maersk Tankers’ combined fleet and it then intends to roll out its ‘one voice approach’ on bunker purchasing to other tramp shipping companies and trading houses.
The new service will launch on 1 April and the companies highlight that scaling up bunker volume requirements will give access ‘to better prices and services, leveraging relationships with key suppliers in the world’s busiest bunkering hubs to ensure optimal service and bunker premiums’.
Cargill currently charters a fleet of around 700 vessels and buys some 2.5 million metric tonnes of bunker fuel each year. Adding in Maersk’s bunker volumes from its commercially managed fleet of over 220 tankers will push the joint annual bunker requirement to 3.5 million mt.
‘As independent bunker consumers with no physical oil activity or bunker assets, there will be no conflicts of interest. We can therefore focus on providing transparency, robust benchmarking, and a modern and digital customer experience,’ said Olivier Josse, Head of Tankers and Marine Fuel at Cargill Ocean Transportation.
‘We are excited to collaborate with Maersk Tankers and together we have ambitious plans to become a unique provider of bunker solutions.’
The partners say that their new ‘one-stop-shop’ will give customers better access to market information, the optimisation of bunker logistics, and improved claims support.
‘Tramp shipping companies face challenges today in a bunker market that is becoming increasingly complex. With our new bunker procurement service, we want to make their lives easier,’ commentes Claus Gronborg, Chief Investment Officer at Maersk Tankers.
‘Through our scale, they will get access to bunker fuel at competitive prices, while getting an experienced partner that will navigate the bunker market on their behalf. We are excited to venture into this together with Cargill and utilise our combined expertise to provide this new solution to both our pool partners and other shipowners and operators.’
The new bunker service will also focus on shipping’s decarbonisation targets and it will address access to future marine fuels, including Cargill’s growing internal biodiesel business.
The new partnership follows a series of strategic collaborations between Cargill and Maersk Tankers.
In 2019, Cargill and Maersk Tankers created a joint MR tankers pool and launched Project Njord with Mitsui & Co to bring turn-key energy-saving solutions to the market.
Last year, Cargill became a strategic investor in ZeroNorth, a tech start-up focusing on vessel performance optimization and decarbonisation which was a spin-off from Maersk Tankers.