CP Ships has signed an agreement with FastShip to assume commercial and marketing management for FastShip's TransAtlantic services. London-based CP Ships is the TransAtlantic's largest container service operator with twelve separate loops, and the seventh largest world-wide. FastShip, headquartered in Philadelphia, is creating a high-speed Transatlantic transport network.
CP Ships will establish a FastShip management team that will: Provide dedicated sales and customer service and joint back-office activities in the US and Europe; Manage the inland transportation network, including rail, truck and short sea, between FastShip's dedicated terminal in Cherbourg, France and the rest of Europe; and manage the container and chassis fleet in North America and Europe, which will
allow for pooling opportunities between FastShip and CP Ships.
CP Ships is also taking a small equity position in FastShip.
"We see FastShip as a complement to our existing range of TransAtlantic services. By including FastShip as another strong brand among our service offerings we will be able to provide a competitive advantage to customers who require high-speed transport that is less costly than air freight," commented Ray Miles, CEO of CP Ships.
"This alliance provides a solid foundation upon which to develop the FastShip service," said Roland Bullard II, President of FastShip Inc. "It allows FastShip to benefit from CP Ships' proven brand-building and operating skills, which will increase our ability to create competitive products and services that will make FastShip a success."
CP Ships, the container shipping business of Canadian Pacific Limited, operates a fleet of 85 ships and will move nearly two million teu this year. Through its readily recognised brands, ANZDL, Canada Maritime, Cast, Contship Containerlines, Lykes Lines and TMM Lines, CP Ships offers a worldwide network of regional services. It also includes CP Ships Logistics and Montreal Gateway Terminals
"This is a financially strong and well managed business which has demonstrated its ability to develop and manage successfully a family of separately branded businesses into which the FastShip TransAtlantic services will fit particularly well," Mr Bullard said.
FastShip will target high value, time sensitive goods including electronics, apparel and perishable items. At the core of FastShip's service will be four high-speed ships designed to fill a gap in the range of TransAtlantic services currently available by providing speed, reliability and frequency comparable to standard air freight at half the cost. Service will commence in 2004 with delivery of the first ship.