Höegh - Pioneers in the international shipping industry since 1927
For 80 years Höegh has been a well recognised name in the international shipping industry. Founded in 1927 Leif Høegh found his opportunity in the growing market for oil transportation. By the outbreak of World War II in 1939 Leif Höegh & Co (LHC) managed a fleet of 13 ships and had produced an annual increase in value-adjusted equity of 21% per share. Liner shipping was seen as counter cyclical to tankers and in order to hedge risks the company started its liner activities with the Java Pacific Line. From 1948 Leif Höegh & Co operated the liner operation the West Africa AlexandraService, which was ultimately sold out in 1990.
Diversified and introduced new concepts
The owning and operation of oil tankers came to form the mainstay of Leif Höegh & Co for decades. From a process of transition in the 1960's the company diversified into new activities also introducing new concepts for transportation. Combined oil/bulk/ore carriers (OBO) became a speciality for several decades, whereas from a start with transporting cars lifted on and off bulk carriers the car/bulk involvement was developed further into specialised forest product carriers and Ro/Ro car carriers.
A joint venture was formed with Ugland in 1970 Höegh-Ugland Auto Liners (HUAL) and became the basis for developing a world leading Ro/Ro operator. Leif Höegh & Co acquired the other 50% of HUAL in March 2000. Renamed in 2005 Höegh Autoliners is today one of the world's largest operators in the Ro/Ro and vehicle transportation segment.
Höegh pioneered the transportation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) when contracting the world's first LNG carrier with special tanks (the Moss type) delivered to the company in 1973. The vessel is still trading on a long-term contract. Today Höegh LNG owns partly or wholly four LNG carriers including two new vessels delivered in 2006 to be employed on the worlds northernmost LNG development - Snøhvit. The same year Höegh LNG ordered two LNG regasification vessels, a concept developed by the company, for a deepwater port to be constructed in the US.History
Stock listing and consolidation
Various owning companies were stock listed since the founding of the first Höegh company Atlantica in 1927, and in December 1987 Leif Höegh & Co ASA was listed at the Oslo Stock Exchange after merging the various ship-owning entities. This consolidation process laid the basis for new development towards a decentralised business model. The combined carrier and tanker related activities were de-merged and stock listed as Bona Shipholding in 1992 as a consequence of the US Oil Polution Act (OPA 90) that followed in the wake of the Exxon Valdez accident in Alaska.
Bona Shipholding developed into a major operator in the OBO and Aframax tanker segments and was subsequently sold. The acquisition of the reefer operator Cool Carriers in 1994 was developed into Unicool in 1997 through a joint venture with Safmarine. Leif Höegh & Co owned Unicool 100% from the end of 1999 until Cool Carriers AB was sold to J. Lauritzen A/S with effect from 2001. Höegh Fleet Services AS was established as a separate ship-management entity in 1995 serving Leif Höegh & Co's fleet. Ship management has long been considered a core competence and a part of the company's products.Hoegh Berlin
From diversified to growth in Ro/Ro and LNG
When Leif Höegh & Co acquired 100% of HUAL in 2000 the company's strategy had changed from diversification to focus on Ro/Ro and LNG. Consequently non-core activities where disposed off; Höegh Lines involved in the liner business and transportation of forest products in specialised open hatch vessels terminated its activities in March 2001: The Liner business was sold as were the open hatch fleet, and the commercial open hatch operation was transferred to Saga Forest Carriers. Two large dry bulk carriers were sold in 2005 concluding the disinvestment in non-core assets.
In 2003 Höegh Autoliners took delivery of the first new vessel in an extensive fleet expansion and renewal program. Totally 32 PCTC newbuildings is being delivered in the period 2003-2011. Furthermore, 12 of our PCTCs will be lengthened during 2008-2010, adding carrying capacity corresponding to three ships.
In 2006 Höegh LNG took delivery of two new LNG carriers and ordered two floating storage and regasification units(FSRUs) pointing a new direction for Höegh LNG.
New generation at the helm
In 2003 the third generation took control of the company. The cousins Leif O. Høegh and Morten Høegh, made an offer to acquire all outstanding shares in Leif Höegh & Co AS. The offer was well received and the company was privatised and de-listed. The growth ambitions are carried on.
In 2006 the company was restructured into two separate entities- Höegh Autoliners and Höegh LNG- with a common holding company (Leif Höegh & Co Limited).
In 2011, Höegh LNG's shares were listed on Oslo Børs. Leif Höegh & Co Limited remains an important shareholder in Höegh LNG.
Höegh Autoliners - from stong to stronger: Höegh Autoliners is today one of the world's largest operators in the Ro/Ro and vehicle transportation segment. This position was further enhanced when the company acquired a fleet of 12 car carriers from A.P. Moller - Maersk in 2008 and A.P. Moller - Maersk became a minority shareholder holding 37,5 per cent of the shares in Höegh Autoliners. At the same time the company relocated its shipowning activities from Bermuda to Norway under a new Norwegian shipping tax scheme introduced in 2008.
Höegh LNG - building on experience: Höegh LNG is a provider of floating LNG infrustructure services, offering regasification, transport and production services under long-term contracts. The company operates a fleet of floating storage and regasification units (FSRUs) which act as floating LNG import terminals, and LNG carriers. In addition, Höegh LNG has developed a solution for floating LNG production (FLNG).
Other activities - Building on long-term tradition from cyclical shipping markets
The Høegh family also has developed interests in real estate and in financial advisory services.