Danish shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk said on Monday it has appointed company veteran Vincent Clerc as its new chief executive to lead the group through a period of slowing container demand.
Clerc, 50, will take over from Soren Skou on January 1 at a time of rapid growth for Maersk as it seeks to develop its land-based logistics business as freight rates in its core container shipping business fall sharply.
Switzerland-baorn Clerc will be the first non-Dane to lead the 120-year-old company, having joined Maersk in 1997. He is currently CEO of the company’s Ocean & Logistics business.
Maersk, Denmark’s biggest company, employs more than 100,000 people around the world.
Maersk chair Robert Uggla said: ““The board is pleased to announce Vincent Clerc as the new CEO of Maersk.
“Since 2019, Vincent has been the CEO of Maersk Ocean & Logistics, which contributes a significant part of the company’s invested capital and results.
“He has been a pivotal leader for Maersk’s transformation, demonstrating great strategic acumen, an ability to execute complex plans and deliver long term shareholder value through compelling customer solutions.
“The strong tail winds that benefited the supply chain industries during the pandemic are coming to an end.
“With an increasingly challenging outlook, the board believes Vincent holds the right experience and capabilities as CEO to pursue and oversee Maersk’s strategic and organizational development in the years to come …
“Soren has contributed to our group’s development over almost forty years, of which eleven years as CEO for Maersk Tankers, four years as CEO for Maersk Line and close to seven years as CEO for Maersk.
“During his tenure as CEO of Maersk, Soren has been instrumental in redefining Maersk into a customer centric end-to-end logistics provider with a global leadership position in sustainable transportation solutions.
“On behalf of the board, I sincerely thank Soren for his valued leadership and impressive results.
“I am equally grateful for Soren’s support in the CEO succession review making sure the company does not lose any momentum in its strategic endeavors in a changing and difficult market.”
Clerc said: “I am thrilled by the trust the board is showing by giving me the opportunity to lead the next stages of our transformation.
“It is a privilege for me to lead a company with such a long heritage, strong values, and tremendous potential.
“I am looking forward, together with the leadership team and all the Maersk colleagues around the world, to take it to the next level, building on the very strong foundation we obtained with Soren at the helm, and delivering on our promises to customers, shareholders, and to the society at large.
“On the heels of a pandemic, and now with the war in Ukraine and an energy crisis upon us, there are many tough challenges ahead; challenges that impact us all and where Maersk can make a difference.
“Companies are rethinking their supply chains in this new environment, they are looking for more stability, and more support on their decarbonisation journey.
“This represents an incredible business opportunity for Maersk that we all are eager to seize.
“It will demand of us that we stay the course on our strategy, delivering on our digitalisation and decarbonisation roadmaps, while keeping a sharper than ever eye on our operational excellence and performance.
“When we do that, we will make a profound positive impact for all our stakeholders.”