Global shipping, logistics and marine services provider GAC Group today announced a major expansion plan with the opening of 13 ship agency offices in major ports throughout Australia.
The locations include Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Gladstone and Brisbane in Queensland; Sydney (country headquarters), Newcastle and Port Kembla in New South Wales; Melbourne in Victoria; Adelaide in South Australia; and Fremantle, Dampier and Port Hedland in Western Australia. Each office will offer a full range of ship agency and maritime ancillary services.
Announcing GAC’s latest move from the Sydney headquarters, Christer Sjödoff, GAC Regional Director, Asia Pacific says that it is the first time in the Group’s 51-year history that it has launched such a large number of offices in a single country within a span of just two months.
Increasing demand = growth
“We have been in Australia for more than five years, providing services to our clients through collaboration with global agency network partners, as we do in many locations around the world. Where demand dictates for increased services, GAC opts for the setting up of a full-office operation as we have done in China and Norway earlier this year,” Mr Sjödoff adds.
“Australia’s exports are continuing to grow, especially in the dry bulk and LNG sectors. This, in turn, will see a corresponding growth in the number of vessels calling at Australian ports to export these commodities globally. GAC is a major agency for many of these vessel owners and charterers and we want to be here to give our clients the best in shipping services support.”
Scott Henderson, the National Operations Manager based in Sydney, says: “As our country’s resource sector continues to expand rapidly, especially due to the huge demand from China and India, GAC wants to ensure that the entire needs of our clients’ and their vessels are met when calling at various ports around the continent. The continuing growth in exports of coal, iron ore and gas will see an increasing number of port calls by bulk carriers and LNG tankers. The owners of these vessels will need the services of a world-class company like GAC to ensure smooth turnaround of their ships and safe discharge of the cargoes.
“GAC Australia is equipped with in-country knowledge and our aim is to handle a significant share of the Australian bulk port agency business within our first year of operation, with further steady growth thereafter. I believe Principals will see our offering as a welcome alternative in a market which has seen aggressive consolidation in recent years.”
Mr Henderson adds that whilst the initial focus is on ship agency support, the company will introduce its extended portfolio such as GAC Fire, Rescue and Safety services, GAC Marine Logistics, as well as GAC-SMHI weather routing for safer voyage in stages at a later date.