Hanjin Shipping gains legal approval to shut European business

25 October 2016 (Last Updated October 25th, 2016 18:30)

South Korea's Seoul Central District Court has approved the country’s troubled container line Hanjin Shipping’s request to shutdown its European operations.

South Korea's Seoul Central District Court has approved the country’s troubled container line Hanjin Shipping’s request to shutdown its European operations. 

With the approval, Hanjin Shipping will close all ten of its European offices, which include the company’s regional headquarters in Germany.

The company filed for bankruptcy protection in August, and expects to begin the process of winding up its business in Europe this week, reported Bloomberg.

However, the company has not disclosed the number of employees working at its Europe business, or how many of them would be affected by the closures.

"The company captured nearly 4.3% of the market share of Asia-Europe trade last year."

In addition, Hanjin Shipping is currently seeking buyers to sell its Asia-US business. The company captured nearly 4.3% of the market share of Asia-Europe trade last year. 

The Seoul court had plans to sell the entire company, and has already initiated a breakup process for Hanjin and the latest approval is a part of this process.

According to Hanjin, the company handled 1.27 million TEU of containers last year on the Asia-European route, representing 27% of its total 4.62 million units.

By the end of this week, the Seoul court expects to receive initial bids to sell Hanjin’s Asia-US business’ marketing network and sign a deal as early as next month.

Hanjin is also discussing with possible buyers to sell its 54% share in the Long Beach port container terminal in the US.

Last week, the company said that it would cut around 60% of its 700 land-based workers under a restructuring plan, reported The Wall Street Journal.