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Hi all! 

Heard a RUMOUR and RUMOUR only, that DFDS could be investigating a purchase of Scandelines (operates train ferries from Rodby to Putgarten, and other short routes) 

 

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According to the Danish site Inside business are considering 3i private equity fund to sell Scandlines. 3i seems to be in secret for new owners of the company in equity held at ten years. He writes standby.dk. Rumors confirmed by Niels Smedegaard CEO of DFDS.

"We also heard that the owners are thinking about a sale. We looked at Scandlines later in 2013. At the time, there were some interesting things for us. The question is more topical "says the CEO of DFDS Niels Smedegaard Inside business according to standby.dk

- Julien Carpenter (Ship Spotting DFDS) 

 

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But the Rodby route has no long term future, does it ? The tunnel is scheduled to open in 2028, at which the link and its 4 vessels will be redundant. Unless the construction programme is delayed ? Bit I suppose it will give DFDS another route to close.....

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It will be interesting to see just how long DFDS can keep the King and Princess going before they become uneconomical to operate. I know they have recently had significant money spent on their interiors but there will surely come a point in the next few years where DFDS has to make a decision about what it does with this route and I would love to know what their thinking is...

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Not quite sure where to put this but here is the end for the old Dana Gloria/the first King of Scandinavia, later Jupiter. She was reported to be under tow when caught by Typhoon Damrey. Her crew of seven were apparently lost.

 

Once the storm had cleared, this was the wreck - (image from here.)

Anh_1_tau_Jupiter_gui.jpg

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Thanks for posting hvv, and very sad.

I don't know whether anyone has compiled any statistics on this, but it would be interesting to know what proportion of our beloved former North European ferries end their days in this way - as wrecks rather than at the breakers.  But it must be a fair few - I've got to over 20 without even thinking about it for more than a couple of seconds.

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27 minutes ago, Gareth said:

Thanks for posting hvv, and very sad.

I don't know whether anyone has compiled any statistics on this, but it would be interesting to know what proportion of our beloved former North European ferries end their days in this way - as wrecks rather than at the breakers.  But it must be a fair few - I've got to over 20 without even thinking about it for more than a couple of seconds.

Fortunately I have a representative sample ready to go at - I have a database of Sealink ships, including short-term charters, which has fate as a data point and which is broadly up to date. Excluding those still in service or laid up and still usable and doing a pivot table on the fates of the rest gives this breakdown -

image.png.671644d2b6193053c45e499966bae0b3.png

It's probably true that purpose-built railway ships (about 2/3 of the list) were a bit more robust than the average so perhaps less prone to sinking but this should still be indicative and the vast majority make it safely to the breakers.

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I'm sure most of them do, but the proportion that don't may be higher than we think.  It is possible that the former Sealink fleet might not be a representative sample.  Many of them had shorter lives than the average ferry (a consequence of short-sightedness in design that left many of them obsolete before their time), particularly those built in the 60s.  As a result many of them probably went to the breakers long before they were at any risk of hull failure.

Take, by way of contrast, the core former Townsend Thoresen fleet.  Including the ASN fleet, of the 31 ships built to order for Townsend Thoresen's parent companies between the late 1950s and 1987, 5 of them lie wrecked somewhere around the world.  3 remain in service, and the other 23 went to the breakers (including the 2 that were salvaged after sinking).  So for the former TT fleet now gone, the ratio of wrecked to breakers is 5:23.  Sobering thought!

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11 hours ago, hhvferry said:

Not quite sure where to put this but here is the end for the old Dana Gloria/the first King of Scandinavia, later Jupiter. She was reported to be under tow when caught by Typhoon Damrey. Her crew of seven were apparently lost.

 

Once the storm had cleared, this was the wreck - (image from here.)

Anh_1_tau_Jupiter_gui.jpg

Very sad. A lovely ferry, which of course served the Newcastle to Norway route for over ten years, from 1994 until 2005 I believe. Then of course, along came DFDS who took just three years to dismiss the route as unprofitable and shut it down for good.

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11 minutes ago, Ryan_H said:

Very sad. A lovely ferry, which of course served the Newcastle to Norway route for over ten years, from 1994 until 2005 I believe. Then of course, along came DFDS who took just three years to dismiss the route as unprofitable and shut it down for good.

Yes, the first time I sailed on her she was called Color Viking it was only when I was onboard a few years later that I realised Fjord Lines Jupiter was the same vessel. I had the same experience with Fjord Norway too.

A sad way to go. 

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40 minutes ago, Ryan_H said:

Very sad. A lovely ferry, which of course served the Newcastle to Norway route for over ten years, from 1994 until 2005 I believe. Then of course, along came DFDS who took just three years to dismiss the route as unprofitable and shut it down for good.

She did not travel the route Bergen -  Newcastle under DFDS.

She was originally Sija Line m/s Wellamo  Stockholm, Helsinki  in 1975

Then sold to DFDS in 1981 named Dana Gloria  Doing Newcastle to Esjberg and Gothenburg to Newcastle then named King of Scandinavia on  Copenhagen to Oslo route

Then 1994 sold to Fjord Line became Color Viking then doing Bergen/Newcastle but not under DFDS later renamed Jupiter and resold

It was The Fjord Norway that DFDS Bought on The Newcastle - Bergen Route which they closed and is now plying the Newcastle - Ijmuiden route.

Edited by spll
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12 hours ago, hhvferry said:

Not quite sure where to put this but here is the end for the old Dana Gloria/the first King of Scandinavia, later Jupiter. She was reported to be under tow when caught by Typhoon Damrey. Her crew of seven were apparently lost.

 

Once the storm had cleared, this was the wreck - (image from here.)

Anh_1_tau_Jupiter_gui.jpg

Very sad. A lovely ferry, which of course served the Newcastle to Norway route for over ten years, from 1994 until 2005 I believe. Then of course, along came DFDS who took just three years to dismiss the route as unprofitable and shut it down for good.

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Yes sorry I wasn't try to imply that this ship sailed to Norway for DFDS, rather that she did so very successfully and for a long time. This ship went a long way towards starting my own fascination with ferries, when my parents took me to Norway on her for the first time in 1997, as Color Viking.

I should also have said it actually took DFDS just two years to close the route. 

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4 hours ago, Ryan_H said:

Yes sorry I wasn't try to imply that this ship sailed to Norway for DFDS, rather that she did so very successfully and for a long time. This ship went a long way towards starting my own fascination with ferries, when my parents took me to Norway on her for the first time in 1997, as Color Viking.

I should also have said it actually took DFDS just two years to close the route. 

Maybe a crucial point for Newcastle & Bergen was that both Fjord line & Color Line are Norwegian carriers thus had a vested interest in the route in allowing native travellers to enjoy cheaper prices on board and in the UK. I was led to believe it was one of main motivations in building the small outlet village at Port of Tyne.

I think we all know that neither Viking/Jupiter or the Peter Pans were or are blessed with an abundance of vehicle space hence the reason why the route struggled being so passenger focused. Maybe a vessel configured in a similar way to the Hurtigruten's could offer a future as there's certainly an appetite on both sides to see it recommence?

Edited by jonno
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I don't understand why Fjord Line don't give it another try. They certainly have the ships for the job. It'll be ten years since the route closed next year, and four years since Harwich-Esbjerg closed, high time something happened!

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58 minutes ago, Ryan_H said:

I don't understand why Fjord Line don't give it another try. They certainly have the ships for the job. It'll be ten years since the route closed next year, and four years since Harwich-Esbjerg closed, high time something happened!

Is the fact that no one has stepped in proof that the route cannot be profitable then? Shame as I would love a route to Norway

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14 hours ago, The Ferry Man said:

Is the fact that no one has stepped in proof that the route cannot be profitable then? Shame as I would love a route to Norway

Well maybe that's certainly the consensus view it seems. I just find it hard to believe this particular route could have existed for so long, interruted only by wars, and yet suddenly it isn't viable anymore. As Jonno said above, the Royal Quays development at North Shields was built at least partly with Scandinavian shoppers in mind. 

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Isn't it low cost airlines and the emergence of the Internet giving consumers unparalleled access to search for numerous other holiday ideas,  the main reason routes like this aren't viable anymore? Real shame as I really want a route to Norway to return. Also the idea of taking your car on holiday on a new adventure is not such a big thing as it was in the 1970s and 1980s? 

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1 hour ago, Nick Hyde said:

Isn't it low cost airlines and the emergence of the Internet giving consumers unparalleled access to search for numerous other holiday ideas,  the main reason routes like this aren't viable anymore? Real shame as I really want a route to Norway to return. Also the idea of taking your car on holiday on a new adventure is not such a big thing as it was in the 1970s and 1980s? 

Yes very true, plus the growth of the cruise industry in recent years. But then again, there seem to be plenty of people taking their own cars on the longer routes to Spain, and I would have thought that the UK would still be a lucrative market for Norwegians wanting to visit the UK for shopping trips etc. From what I recall of the various crossings I did to Scandinavia over the years, at various times of year, the ships were never anything like empty.

Edited by Ryan_H
typing error
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  • Gareth changed the title to DFDS Updates

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