Home Depot Charters Boxship to Escape Container Market Woes

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Monday June 14, 2021

US home improvement retailer Home Depot has chartered its own whole container ship as a means of getting around the current disruption and spiking spot freight rates in the container market.

The company will be taking on the ship from next month, news provider CNBC reported on Monday, citing comments from CEO Ted Decker.

"We have a ship that's solely going to be ours and it's just going to go back and forth with 100% dedicated to Home Depot," CNBC cited Decker as saying.

The move is a highly unusual one for an individual shipper, but the incentive is strong with current abnormal conditions in the container freight market. Congestion has built up at container terminals around the world, most notably at Yantian in China where COVID-19 lockdown measures are slowing operations, while US imports remain strong.

Home Depot is America's third-largest importer by volume of ocean containers, according to the Journal of Commerce.