The wait is over! Wallenius Wilhelmsen says they have signed a letter of intent for four firm, and eight optional, next generation vessels.
“I am very happy that we can launch this to the market now. I know it is expected from us, and that in order to keep our fleet size, we need to continue ordering vessels. However, with no clear direction on future fuel, this has not been an easy task. We needed time to assess what was the best option for us,” says Xavier Leroi, EVP & COO Shipping Services.
It’s been a long time coming, but after meticulous planning and hard work from everyone involved, we can finally share that we have signed a letter of intent for four next generation vessels (and up to eight optional units of 9,350CEU class methanol dual fuel pure car and truck carriers) with Jinling Shipyard (Jiangsu). The first vessels will start being delivered from the second half of 2026. He added.
The Shaper Class
“There is an urgent need for our industry to transform over the next couple of years. As a company, we are determined to shape this industry and lead the way to capitalize effectively on changing circumstances, as we grow with customers and partners sharing our journey,” says Lasse Kristoffersen, CEO.
And these are not just four new ordinary vessels! We are committed to being a shaper, not an adapter. We want to be transformational in the fight against climate change and all of Wallenius Wilhelmsen’s new investments will contribute to the ambitious goals of reaching net-zero emissions by 2027.
As such, as a pledge to this ambition, it is only fitting that our new vessel class is named “The Shaper Class”.
We have high ambitions for the future. We want to be our customers’ first choice in shipping and we want to deliver an end-to-end net-zero emissions solution by 2027. Our new vessels will enable us to get closer to these goals. At the same time, we are the world’s largest RoRo vessel operator and will maintain a fleet of 125-135 vessels.
Lars Ekren, Senior Manager – Newbuildings and Conversions explains: “The process of developing our new design started over 1.5 year ago and the Newbuidlings team have been working in close collaboration with the designer (Delta Marin) and internal & external stakeholders during this period, to ensure the vessel design meets of safety requirements and is well suitable for our future short term & long-term operational needs,” he continues, “Energy efficiency & reducing GHG emissions is a top priority, and a lot of effort has put into ensuring the new vessels will significantly contribute to meeting our emission reduction targets!”
Our commitment is to continue to grow with our customers, and together, reach our net-zero emissions ambitions. We will do so by securing new builds and biofuels, as well as maintaining the 125-135 vessels on our fleet. We will evolve whilst nurturing our reliable services, tailored to our customers’ needs.
“To secure our number one position, we will continue to deliver great services with a competitive fleet, offering sustainable supply chain services both on land and at sea. We are already partnering with our customers on reducing emissions through biofuel and with the new vessels we can accelerate this towards net-zero. This requires new and more expensive fuels but both we and our customers are committed to secure this as soon as it can be made available,” says Leroi.
Our belief is that methanol is the fastest way to reach net-zero emission. As such, our choices going forward reflect that. These four vessels have been ordered to use alternative fuel sources, such as methanol, upon delivery. They will also be ammonia-ready and will be able to be converted as soon as ammonia becomes available in a safe and secure way.
So here’s to the “Shaper Class”. We hope you’re excited because together, we will shape the future!