German cargo container shipping line Hapag-Lloyd has revealed plans to split its organisation in Europe into northern and southern regions.

The overhaul is part of the company’s strategy to remain closely connected with international clients.

After the split, Hapag-Lloyd will serve its customers from a total of six regions.

The new Region South Europe will be headquartered in the port city of Genoa, Italy, helping the shipping firm to further strengthen its competitive edge in the Mediterranean region.

The new region will include Area Italy, Area Turkey, Area Iberia, Area Egypt and Area Med Agents, which manages 15 regional agents.

Juan Pablo Richards has been appointed as the new leader and senior managing director of Region South Europe. Previously, he managed operations in Area Brazil.

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Region North Europe will include Area Germany & Central Europe, Area Benelux, Area UK & Ireland, Area France, as well as Area North.

Michael Pradel has been named senior managing director of Region North Europe.

Hapag-Lloyd CEO Rolf Habben Jansen said: “An essential part of our strategy 2023 is to further develop our organisation and ensure our proximity to markets and customers.

“Launching our sixth region will help us do exactly that, and I am very much looking forward to working with Juan Pablo Richards and Michael Pradel to further expand our already strong positions in Northern and Southern Europe.”

Hapag-Lloyd’s fleet includes 237 container ships. It manages 118 liner services and connects over 600 ports on all continents. It also operates 399 branch offices in 128 countries with approximately 12,800 employees.