Thursday, May 19, 2011

Container Shipping Line Switches After Major Freight Liner Agency Enters Administration

Johnson Stevens Fold Days After New Route Agreements and Unifeeder Act Immediately
Shipping News Feature

UK – One of the oldest and most respectable freight liner agencies in the country has entered administration apparently blaming the European Union embargo on Iranian vessels as a principal cause. Johnson Stevens Agencies was established in 1976 by charismatic director Derek Johnson MBE and acted as agents for the Iranian state shipping line IRISL amongst many others.

Already we have been notified that the container feeder service operated by Unifeeder A/S of Denmark has established its own office in the UK to handle current and future matters. Unifeeder tell us that Johnson Stevens have been taken under administration by the Ipswich County Court under the Insolvency Act and is no longer able to perform their obligations towards Unifeeder A/S but that they have been informed that Johnston Stevens Agencies Ltd is capable of meeting all of their financial obligations.

According to reports administrators from accountancy group PKF have been appointed and they have stated the freezing of Johnson Stevens bank facilities due to the Iranian situation had impacted on the company. It appears that most of the non Iranian business will continue to trade under the name JSA Global Limited after Kestrel Liner Agencies acquired many of the assets in a deal set up by the respective directors with the approval of the administrators.

Johnson Stevens operated from as many as ten UK based offices and Kestrel has facilities throughout the country which would probably make the group the largest conventional liner agents operating in the UK. Just days ago we reported that WEC Lines (BV) had opened two new Spanish routes and awarded the agency services to Johnson Stevens who already operate for the Dutch group.

Unifeeder A/S assure us that their new facilities will immediately take control of their services and have rushed staff from the UK, Germany and the Netherlands to manage the situation. The new contact details for Unifeeder clients are as follows:

Telephone: +44 7565564335 Feeder service (temporary)

Telephone: +44 7565564336 Operations (temporary)

Telephone: +44 7565564337 Shortsea service (temporary) Fax: +44 1394613101

Email:

Book-UK@unifeeder.com  (feeder bookings import/export)

Ops-UK@unifeeder.com  (feeder vessel operations)

UK-book@unifeeder.com  (Shortsea bookings)

UK-rates@unifeeder.com  (Shortsea sales)

Web: www.unifeeder.com

Unifeeder headquarters: + 45 88 830000