.The new West African multipurpose warehouse that was launched last week in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, by Maersk Line
Leading multinational shipping line; Maersk Line may have downgraded the status of its Nigerian office from being a West Africa hub to a mere Nigerian office, meant only to cater for the needs of shippers with cargoes destined for Nigeria or departing from Nigeria.
Even though there was a feeble unofficial denial, sources within the shipping line confirmed to our correspondent last week, that the decision was taken after last year’s gruesome murder of the wife of its Managing Director, West Africa.
Recall that, the Managing Director of Maersk Nigeria; Gildas Tohouo, and his wife, Bernadett, were attacked on December 9, 2020 at their residence at Lugard Avenue, Ikoyi, Lagos State. The wife was stabbed to death by the attackers.
Our sources confirmed that the incident rattled the management of the global shipping line, which prompted the appointment of replacement for Mr Gildas Tohouo, whose designation is Nigerian Managing Director.
“The 2019 incident really affected the rating of Nigeria by the Maersk conglomerate, that was part of what informed the decision to relocate the hub from Nigeria to Ivory Coast”, the source told Shipping Position Daily.
“I am confirming to you that, they have moved their hub which is the controlling cluster to Abidjan”, the source added.
Perhaps, a confirmation of the downgrading of Nigeria came last week when Maersk Line launched what it described as its West African multipurpose warehouse in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.
In a statement, which was sighted by Shipping Position Daily, Maersk said the multipurpose facility is “strategically located” outside the city around the industrial zone, with easy access to the port.
The company said the facility is equipped to support various industries from retail, fast moving consumer goods and technology.
According to Mr Thomas Theeuwes, Maersk Central West Africa Managing Director, “Maersk has a strong presence in the West Africa market, and we are continuously reviewing our value proposition to ensure we offer competitive end-to-end solutions.
Furthermore, the company said the new facility will enable a consistent warehousing experience for Maersk’s global and local customers. That means local customers will receive the same level of service as those in Europe and North America.
“With this facility we are able to assist customers in meeting the dynamic challenges faced in their supply chains, providing much needed flexibility caused by seasonal and irregular consumer demands”, it added.