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Compagnie Maritime d'Affrêtement (Shipping company, France)

Last modified: 2004-07-10 by
Keywords: compagnie maritime d'affretement | lozenge (white) | letters: cma (blue) |
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[Compagnie Maritime d'Affretement house flag]by Jorge Candeias


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Presentation of Compagnie Maritime d'Affrêtement

CMA (Compagnie Maritime d'Affrêtement) was founded in 1978 by the Lebanese businessman Jacques Saadé.
Initially, CMA operated scheduled lines between the south of Europe and Lebanon and Syria. The company grew up quickly and was in 1995 the leading French company in container transport.

In 1996, the government led by Alain Juppé decided the privatization of CGM (Compagnie Générale Maritime), itself the merging of Compagnie Générale Transatlantique and Compagnie des Messageries Maritimes since 1977. CMA purchased CGM. Johnny Saadé, Jacques' brother, sued him, and the battle for the control of the company was won by Jacques only four years later. Since Saadé is a personal friend of President Jacques Chirac and Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic Hariri, the openness of the transacation was questioned: CGM had been recapitalized by the French state a few months before the purchase, the price paid by Saadé was fairly low, and CMA had hidden some big financial problems. A judicial inquiry on the privatization of CGM is still pending, and the French president and its party establishment are still haunted by the possible scandal.
In 1998, the company absorbed Australian National Line. CMA-CGM was incorporated in 1999. The CEO of CMA-CGM is still the patriarch Jacques Saadé. The company is based in Marseilles.

Today, CMA-CGM operates more than 150 ships, fully-owning about 30 of them. These ships serve 85 transatlantic and regional scheduled lines. CMA-CGM has 205 ports of call in 126 countries and 315 agencies. Regarding container transport, CMA-CGM ranks 1st in France, 4rd in Europe and 5th in the world.

Ivan Sache, 16 December 2004


Description of the flag of Compagnie Maritime d'Affrêtement

The flag of Compagnie Maritime d'Affrêtement is red with a white lozenge touching the borders of the flag and charged with the blue letters CMA.

The houseflag of CMA-CGM is probably white with the logo of the company and the subtitle "The French Line", since the CMA-CGM claims to be the successor of the legendary French lines.

Ivan Sache, 16 December 2004

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