mediterranean shipping company sa msc

The Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC)

Head Office: Geneva, Switzerland

Founded: 1970

Revenue: $43 Billion (2012 financials)

Employees: 30,000

Stock Market: Privately held company

Summary:  Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) is the second largest shipping company in the world (by capacity) behind Maersk Line. They also own a separate division called MSC Cruises, which focuses on tourism travel. This division is separate from the main shipping company and the numbers listed in this are solely for the shipping side of the company.

Ship Capacity: MSC has 474 vessels with a capacity of over 2.4 million Twenty-foot Equivalent Units (TEU). Their largest ship is the MSC Emmanuela and her sister ship MSC Beatrice. Both have a capacity of 13,800 TEU. They also have orders for 11 new ships that will have a capacity of 15,000 TEU each.

Main Trade Routes: While MSC’s most important port is Antwerp, Belgium, they operate in every major port in the world. This is spread over 335 ports on the 6 major continents. They have business on every continent except Antarctica.

Memberships/Alliances: They have two specific memberships and alliances. The Transpacific Stabilization Agreement and the 2M partnership with Maersk Line.

The 2M alliance gives MSC and Maersk a 30 percent share of the entire container shipping industry.

Claim to fame: MSC became the second largest container shipping company in the world through organic growth. Aside from the purchase of the cruise line, they have not participated in any mergers or acquisitions to grow the company. The private company remains in the hands of founder Gianluigi Aponte and his family.


Due entirely to the organic growth they have created over the past 40 plus years, MSC has emerged as one of the largest shipping companies in the world.