Trends affecting Stena

Trends affecting Stena


The transport industry faces major changes. Environmental focus and globalisation are some of the strong trends influencing this development.


The technical development and the increased e-commerce opportunities also mean that the various stages of a product’s journey towards its destination are becoming integrated. “For us, all this presents both challenges and opportunities. The best way we can compete is to offer effective transport whereby we optimise routes and fuel – and also expand our business,” says Carl-Johan Hagman, Head of Stena Shipping & Ferries. 


1. Globalisation

Globalisation and expanding trade have had major positive effects on the global economy and individual countries. Millions of people have been lifted out of poverty and living standards have generally increased across the world. 


“The world has come to ‘the point of no return’ with regard to globalisation. It will continue, despite the trade war between the USA and China,” says Carl-Johan Hagman. “We cannot regulate our way out of globalisation, since it has far too many positive effects for so many people,” he continues.

2. Technology

Today, more than 80 per cent of the world’s transport takes place by sea. According to Carl-Johan Hagman, the technical development means that transport can be optimised in a whole new way, whereby the various transport modes, including aircraft and storage premises, are integrated and logistics maps are redrawn. 


“E-commerce requires shorter lead times and increased service. This entails that large companies can have more control of the entire value chain. An example of this is Amazon’s purchase of aircrafts and freight terminals. Many companies would call themselves logistics companies today. 


“This development entails both threats and opportunities for us. One approach to this development is that we ourselves invest in and develop end-to-end solutions, in order to better understand freight owners’ and end-customers’ value chains and requirements. We can also invest in new technology that contributes to optimising transport. This might, for example, be an app that can follow each cargo in real time. “One of our greatest strengths is that we can offer high-frequency ferry routes,” says Carl-Johan Hagman.


Shipping is the mode of transport that releases the smallest volume of greenhouse gases per unit transported, and will continue to play an important role in the global economy for many years to come. Today, shipping accounts for 2.5 per cent (according to the International Maritime Organization IMO, the UN’s shipping organisation) of the world’s total carbon dioxide emissions. At the same time, the world has never consumed as much oil as it does today. 


“In several ways, Stena plays an active role in finding paths to long-term sustainability for the entire industry.  Both Stena Teknik and Northern Marine Group work with various different technical solutions and operative improvements to benefit Stena’s own activities – but also the entire industry and, not least, the environment. 


“This is a matter of developing techniques to reduce consumption of and emissions from the current fuels, and also finding solutions with alternative fuels, such as battery operation, methanol and electrofuels, which in time can lead to the complete elimination of CO2 emissions,” says Carl-Johan Hagman. He also points to the importance of shared shipping regulations. Via the IMO, Stena takes part in drawing up global legislation. 


“It’s vitally important that all players are subject to the same game rules, for competition and environmental reasons,” says Carl-Johan Hagman.


Read more about Stena’s efforts towards sustainable shipping