Growth and Consolidation
After eight years in management positions with the leading Danish shipowner C.K. Hansen, A.P. Møller decided to go independent in 1912.
The beginning of a new chapter
At 36, with comprehensive international experience, A.P. Møller became the manager of the fleets of the Steamship Company Svendborg (est. 1904) and the newly founded Steamship Company of 1912.
In January 1913, the five vessels were managed by a small staff housed in rented offices in Copenhagen’s old Stock Exchange.
Adding to the ship-owning activities, but for his own account, A.P. Møller started trading in chartering of vessels for third party clients and in brokerage of vessels, both for the Maersk steamship companies and other players in the market.
Although A.P. Møller’s personally owned company was not formally established until in 1914, trading in the new chartering and brokerage activities got off to a flying start in 1913.
The international economy was doing well, and the shipping start-up was favoured by the fortune. The chartering activities included finding cargo for the Maersk vessels, but in addition they also did competitive chartering and supplied ship agency services for vessels calling Danish ports.
But then came the war; uncertainty for the seafaring staff, the assets and indeed the company’s future. Denmark was a neutral country during the First World War.
First World War
A.P. Møller focused the shipping activities on Allied ports and later started trading in the Americas to safeguard people and vessels. More vessels were acquired in the early years of the conflict and from 1916, A.P. Møller took advantage of the exceptional high prices in the market by selling off vessels.
This manoeuvre and a conservative evaluation of the remaining fleet made the Maersk steamship companies well consolidated and well prepared for the post-war period.
These activities meant that A.P. Møller emerged stronger from the war period, and in 1919, the ship owner was able to summarize his feelings on the situation:
“We are now so placed as to be able to take a pretty broad view of things, and in my opinion, we have no right to take a narrow one.”
Five Generations of the Mærsk family
Based on more than 20 years of experience as a captain on sailing ships, Peter Mærsk Møller acquired the small steamer ‘Laura’ and took the family company from sail to steam.
The Mærsk family companies
A.P. Møller, strongly supported by his father, captain Peter Mærsk Møller, established the Steamship Company Svendborg, the forerunner of today’s A.P. Moller – Maersk.
The calculated risk – starting a business
A.P. Møller founded the Steamship Company of 1912. The objective was to create a base for growth.
Growth and Consolidation
A.P. Møller set up a small office to act as the manager of the fleets of the Svendborg and 1912 companies. The first transactions in brokerage of ships and cargoes took place.
A.P. Møller was asked by the Danish government to take up the presidency of Danske Bank
He remained the Chair until 1952, taking the bank from public to private ownership. During this time, A.P. Møller and the shipping companies invested in the bank.
The family partnership
Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller became a partner in “Firmaet A.P. Møller”.
The A.P. Moller Foundation as an owner
The A.P. Moller Foundation was established to ensure a long-term, stable ownership structure of the Maersk activities. A.P. Møller was the Chair, and Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller was a board member.
Into energy - for the greater good
A.P. Møller, together with the Steamship Company Svendborg and the Steamship Company of 1912, was awarded the concession for exploration and extraction of raw materials in the Danish underground.
Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller
Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller became senior partner and Chair of the Svendborg and 1912 companies, the shipyard, other companies and the foundations after his father, A.P. Møller’s death on 12 June 1965.
A strategy for the A.P. Moller Group
The direction for the next 45 years of expansion was laid in a strategy for The A.P. Moller Group.
Engagement over time – the family in the Foundations
Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla became a member of the board of the A.P. Moller Foundation, today’s owner of A.P. Moller Holding.
After 28 years at the helm of the Group, Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller stepped down from daily management.
Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller remained Chair of the Foundations, the Svendborg and 1912 companies and the Odense Steel Shipyard.
The Origin of the Core Values
Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller retired from most presidencies in the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group. Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla became the Co-chair of A.P. Moller – Maersk. Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller introduced the five Core Values, based on his father’s leadership principles.
Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla
Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla became the Chair of the A.P. Moller Foundation when Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller died on 16 April 2012.
A.P. Moller Holding was established to act as the investment arm of the A.P. Moller Foundation
The majority ownership of A.P. Moller – Maersk was transferred to A.P. Moller Holding from the A.P. Moller Foundation. Ane Mærsk Mc-Kinney Uggla became the Chair of A.P. Moller Holding.
A.P. Moller Holding
Adding to its 2.98% holding, A.P. Moller Holding acquired 15% of Danske Bank’s total share capital as part of A.P. Moller – Maersk’s divestment of the same. Following the 15% acquisition, A.P. Moller Holding bought an extra 2.02% to fulfill the ambition of a total ownership of 20%.
Robert M. Uggla
Robert M. Uggla became the CEO of A.P. Moller Holding. A.P. Moller – Maersk was restructured into two independent divisions; an integrated Transport & Logistics division and an Energy division.
The Africa Infrastructure Fund
The Africa Infrastructure Fund was established by A.P. Moller Capital, which was founded to manage stand-alone funds focusing on infrastructure in emerging markets. Maersk Tankers was acquired by A.P. Moller Holding from A.P. Moller – Maersk.
Maersk Oil was divested from A.P. Moller – Maersk to Total S.A.
At the public listing of Maersk Drilling, A.P. Moller Holding retained a 41.26% share of the company. A.P. Moller Holding acquired KK Group.