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American President Lines Ltd. (APL) SWOT & PESTLE Analysis

ID : 52395053| Jul 2018| 14 pages

COMPANY PROFILE -American President Lines Ltd. (APL)

Business Sector :Shipping and Logistics Industry

Operating Geography :Singapore, Global

About American President Lines Ltd. (APL) :

American President Lines Ltd. which is simply referred to as APL is a major player in the ocean carrier space, with comprehensive container shipping and related services, worldwide. The company is also one of the oldest shipping companies in the world and was incepted in 1848. Initially they were called the Pacific Mail Steamship Company until 1921, when they were acquired by Dollar Steamship Lines. In 1938, the directorial board changed the name to American President Lines. Their expertise is derived from their skilled workforce and a 170 year old heritage. In terms of their employee headcount they are a 29000 member strong company as of 2018. The company operates in more than 70 countries across the globe, with roughly 11.7% market share and 536 vessels. In 2016 CMA CGA Group acquired Singapore-based NOL (Neptune Orient Lines),whose chief operating brand is APL (American President Lines).APL is headquartered in Scottsdale in Arizona and is also co-headquartered by a facility in Singapore to levy more clout in their Asian operation. APL runs over 110+ weekly services around the globe.

American President Lines Ltd. (APL) Revenue :

Group revenues of the parent company CMA CGM Group
US $21.12billion - FY 31st Dec 2017 (y-o-y growth 32.1%)
US $15.98 billion - FY 31st Dec 2016

Ownership / Major shareholders :

American President Lines Ltd., now commonly referred to as APL, was a subsidiary of Neptune Orient Lines (NOL). It was bought over by CMA CGM based in France in 2016. APL is now a wholly owned subsidiary of CMA CGM. The acquisition was valued at $2.4 billion.

Competitive Analysis of American President Lines Ltd. (APL)

The SWOT analysis for APL is presented below:
1. Fleet Composition
2. Time-centric services
3. Refrigerated services
4. SOLAS- Gross Mass tools
1. Risk of ownership
2. Hazardous Cargo
1. Intermodal competencies
2. CMA CGM Acquisition
3. SERENITY-Value Added Services
4. Big data Tracking
1. High Capital Investments
2. Competitive Rivalry
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Detailed SWOT Analysis of American President Lines Ltd. (APL)



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1. Risk of ownership: The Shipping industry is one of the most dangerous transport expeditions that occur on a daily basis. The risk involved is so great that every voyage will need to be executed safely and without any glitches. While operating in the high seas, there are a variety of environmental factors like wind speed, tide and weather forecasts that come into play. By promising the customer, his cargo would reach safely and adding a money-back guarantee to it, the company is doubling its propensity of risk in undertaking the voyage.

2. Hazardous Cargo: APL is one of the frontrunners in the industry when it comes to hazardous cargo. Government regulations regarding dangerous cargo vary from region to region. APL is compliant with all these regulations and is also well equipped in delivering the cargo with care. They deal in all kinds of cargo ranging from corrosive elements, inflammables, poisons and volatile gases. The IMO has devised the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDGC) so all vessels adhere to the safety measures. APL has a Hazardous Materials Response Centre (HMRC) that is called into action as and when the need arises.


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1. High Capital Investments: The High capital investments that are associated with maritime transport are a major threat to its smooth functioning. A healthy balance sheet can be maintained only if the payables and expenditures are curtailed once the economies of scale are achieved. In terms of operational efficiency, APL is truly leading from the front but this can be viewed as foolhardy when it comes to their financial spending on cargo lifting equipment.

2. Competitive Rivalry: The closest competitors to APL are CMA-CGM, NYK Line, Aker American Shipping, Anchor Line Company, Maersk, Atlantic Container Line and Eastern Steamship Lines to name a few. Evergreen Marine Company is the largest among these when it comes to all services combined and without taking into account the Alliance mergers. These Alliances have led to a certain amount of price dictatorship in certain regions of operation. Political bodies are introducing regulations to keep this under control.

Major Competitors :

  • Orient Overseas Limited
  • Maersk
  • DB Schenker
  • DHL Supply Chain
  • Ryder
  • C.H. Robinson
  • Li & Fung Limited
  • Worldwide Express
  • Gefco
  • Hapag Lloyd
  • Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC)
  • Evergreen Marine Corp.
  • China COSCO Shipping (Shanghai Communications Technology Development Co., Ltd.)

Major Brands :

Some major vessel names as per their capacity are mentioned below:
  • APL Temasek
  • APL Lion City
  • APL Singapura
  • APL Merlion
  • APL Raffles

Key Business Segments / Diversification :

American President Lines Ltd. (APL)
Logistics International container shipping

Recent Acquisition / Mergers / Alliance / Joint Ventures / Divestitures :

Open Table Preview
Business Segment
Objective/Synergy Achieved
Neptune Orient LinesLogistics2016DivestitureNeptune Orient Lines and its principal operating brand APL was acquired by CMA CGM for $2.4 billion.
Source: Company website and other reliable sources. The detailed table is available in the Complete Report.
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American President Lines Ltd. (APL) SWOT and PESTLE analysis has been conducted by Rohit John Kurian and reviewed by senior analysts from Barakaat Consulting.

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