Seeking a way to better compete against South Korean and Chinese rivals, Japanese shipbuilder Tsuneishi Shipbuilding will take a 49% stake in a bulk carrier and tanker unit of Mitsui E&S Holdings under a capital tie-up.
Tsuneishi, which is based in Hiroshima Prefecture and operates shipyards in China and the Philippines, will acquire the interest in Mitsui E&S Shipbuilding on Oct. 1.
The two sides entered into an operational tie-up back in 2018 that covered parts and design. Later, they decided that deeper ties were necessary and opted for capital ties. They had planned to sign a deal to do that in late March but took more time to iron out the details.
Mitsui E&S has been working to unload certain shipbuilding operations recently to focus on its strengths, such as design and engineering in large-scale vessels. It will also hand over naval and government shipbuilding operations to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in October.
Combined, Mitsui E&S and Tsuneishi would be Japan’s third-largest shipbuilding group by volume of commercial-vessel construction.