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The Boundaries of Deglobalization: A Sign of Hope for the Shipping Industry


The recent merger of two prominent shipping companies suggests that the trend of deglobalization may have reached its limitations.

Late on Monday, Star Bulk Carriers announced its acquisition of Eagle Bulk Shipping, resulting in a combined entity valued at over $2 billion. While Star Bulk experienced a slight dip in out-of-hours trading, Eagle Bulk surged by more than 10% in the premarket.

The shipping sector has long been regarded as a key indicator of overall economic health. The increasing need for the distribution of products serves as an early signal of improving growth.

This merger not only reflects confidence in the future of the shipping industry but also serves as a significant milestone after a turbulent period. The Covid-19 pandemic effectively halted global trade, and China’s slow economic recovery adversely impacted the industry. However, the country has since dedicated substantial efforts to replenishing essential resources like iron ore and coal. As a result, daily freight rates have quadrupled since the beginning of the year.

By joining forces, these two companies have formed the fourth-largest commodities carrier. This newfound size makes them attractive to a broader range of investors, including mutual funds that typically focus on companies valued above $1 billion. Notably, the merger received backing from Oaktree Capital Management, which held stakes in both firms, as reported by The Wall Street Journal.

While challenges remain, this merger signals hope for the shipping industry’s future. It serves as a reminder that even amidst a period of deglobalization, previously unforeseen opportunities may emerge.

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