Mainland’s role in company’s growth
John Coustas, president and CEO
The past 20 years have seen the movement of seaborne goods grow dramatically. Globalisation, increased international trade in finished and semi-finished goods and just-in-time delivery demands continue to drive developments in the international transportation of goods.
As an international provider of seaborne transport services, Danaos Corporation has developed into one of the world’s largest containership charter owners. Celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, Danaos is continuing to stay the course in terms of business development and is building on its international reputation as a leader in global shipping.
Established by Dimitri Coustas, an experienced shipping investor, John Coustas, his son, took over as president and CEO in 1987. Since that time the company’s fleet has grown from three multipurpose vessels to 62 containerships. Today, the company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and John Coustas is confident of the company’s future.
“With Danaos’ large containership fleet, we are now well established in the international shipping industry. Since the 1980s, our direct strategy has focused on our strengths and today we benefit from having a significant competitive advantage. We use the latest design innovations and have developed a reputation for safety and reliability within the industry,” Coustas says.
The company’s hi-tech information systems were developed by Danaos’ affiliate software house; Danaos Management Consultants, a recognised world leader in information technology solutions for shipping applications.
Danaos’ ability to exploit market opportunities during periods of reduced demand and prices has led to profitable growth throughout the shipping cycle. Danaos has continuously chartered vessels to Maersk, CMA-CGM, Yang Ming, Hanjin, ZIM, MSC, SCI and Hyundai Merchant Marine, and to China Shipping Group and TS Lines.
With two new orders to be delivered this month, the fleet is expected to comprise of 65 containerships, placing the company among the world’s top 10 containership charter owners.
Danaos has developed strong ties with China and the region. The company’s recent deliveries of the CMA CGM Melisande and CMA CGM Attila, both built at Shanghai Jiangnan Changxing Heavy Industry have a carrying capacity of 8,530 TEU, are 335 metres long, 42.8 metres wide and each have a speed of 25.8 knots. The latter, post panamax vessel is the largest container ship built in China and symbolises Danaos’ commitment to strengthening its ties with China while continuing to forge ahead within the global shipping industry.
“China continues to play an important role in our company from a shipbuilding, chartering and financing point of view. As China continues to develop as a competitive shipbuilding nation, we would like our co-operation with them to extend to building new designs which are eco-friendly and geared towards Green shipping,” Coustas says.