On 17 February 2023 one of Europe’s largest ferry route and port operators, Stena Line, signed a new deal with Peel Ports, a major UK Port operator, to operate their 12 Quays port and ferry terminal in Birkenhead until the beginning of the 22nd Century.
The Swedish company has operated twice daily ferry services to Belfast since 2011 and this new deal will see them continue to operate there for at least another 77 years, until 2100.
The length of this deal demonstrates the success of the working partnership between the two companies, which now want to further strengthen their relationship together for the long term.
Significant investments have been made to meet current and future needs of their customers, providing them with the right opportunities for them to expand.
This approach has proved to be successful with trade in Birkenhead growing continually over the past 12 years.
Stena Line operates six routes and 12 vessels across the region and Birkenhead has been a key focus for investment in recent years.
In 2021 and 2022 Stena Line launched two new E-Flexer ferries on their Birkenhead to Belfast service, Stena Edda and Stena Embla. These brand-new state-of-the-art ferries increased passenger and freight capacity on the route to Belfast by a third.
Subsequently Stena Line has made further investments with the recent purchase of two sites adjacent to the 12 Quays Terminal, to provide additional freight storage for its freight customers as they continue to expand their businesses there.
Niclas Martensson, CEO of Stena Line, said: “After 12 successful years in 12 Quays our business in Birkenhead continues to flourish year-after-year. This deal is a sign of our long-term commitment to Birkenhead and Peel Ports, with whom we have a very strong partnership. We will continue to make significant investments to increase our services to our customers across the Irish Sea.”