DFDS, Moby in Ferry Swap Deal
Copenhagen headquartered ferry and logistics company DFDS has reached an agreement with the Italian ferry company Moby to acquire its the two combined freight and passenger ferries (RoPax).
The Danish company decided to purchase the ships, the 2001-built Moby Wonder and the 2005-built Moby Aki, in order to expand capacity on the Amsterdam-Newcastle route.
Moby will in turn acquire the two passenger ferries currently operating on Amsterdam-Newcastle — King Seaways and Princess Seaways, built in 1987 and 1986, respectively.
“The new ferries are ideally suited for our Amsterdam-Newcastle route. Their modern onboard facilities and higher car-deck capacity will allow us to grow revenue by fulfilling the growing demand from high-yield car passengers. To freight customers, we will be able to offer increased capacity that can remain constant throughout the year”, says Peder Gellert Pedersen, EVP and Head of DFDS’ Ferry Division.
The agreement is expected to be completed in the second half of October 2019. DFDS will subsequently bareboat-charter King Seaways and Princess Seaways from Moby until January and February 2020, respectively.
Meanwhile, the acquired ferries from Moby will be refurbished to suit the Amsterdam-Newcastle route. This includes commercial and technical investments on board as well as port investments. The refurbished ferries are expected to be deployed on Amsterdam-Newcastle during the first quarter of 2020.
The freight capacity will increase around 40% on a full-year basis. The car capacity will increase around 5% on a full-year basis supported by a cabin configuration that is well suited to the requirements of holiday-makers travelling by car.
In 2018, Amsterdam-Newcastle carried more than 600,000 passengers, 122,000 passenger vehicles and 350,000 lane meters of freight. The capacity increase will provide an opportunity to accommodate further growth in trade and travel, including a large tourism flow, between UK and Continental Europe.