Case studies


3i first invested in Scandlines in 2007. After a number of subsequent re-organisations of Scandlines’ shareholder structure, 3i now holds a 35% stake in Scandlines, with the balance of the equity being held by First State Investments and Hermes Investment Management.

Scandlines operates two high frequency routes between Germany and Denmark (Puttgarden-Rødby and Rostock-Gedser) and two land-based retail shops in Puttgarden and Rostock. Scandlines also owns three of the four ports from which it operates.

Since investing, 3i has supported material investments in Scandlines’ fleet, which have significantly reduced Scandlines’ impact on the environment.

Working towards zero emissions with a clean, modern fleet

Scandlines’ current focus is to reduce its energy consumption and emissions per crossing, with a long-term vision to convert its fleet to a full zero emission operation. Under 3i’s ownership, Scandlines has made a number of significant investments in innovative and environmentally friendly technologies and processes.

Hybrid ferries

In 2013, Scandlines was the first ferry operator in the world to introduce large-scale use of an on-board hybrid propulsion system, which stores excess energy in batteries, enabling a reduction in CO2 emissions of up to 15%. Scandlines now owns and operates the world’s largest hybrid fleet. All six of Scandlines’ passenger ferries have hybrid propulsion technology. This allows Scandlines to reduce CO2 emissions by c15,000 tons per year.

Closed-loop scrubbers

All of Scandlines’ ferries are fitted with modern closed-loop scrubber systems. A closed-loop scrubber cleans the engine exhaust streams of pollutants such as sulphur and particulate matter and reduces emissions by at least 90%.

New thrusters

In 2020, Scandlines began a programme to install new fuel efficient thrusters on all four passenger ferries serving the Puttgarden-Rødby route. The new thrusters will produce less underwater noise, improving conditions for marine life, and further reduce CO2 emissions. To date, two ferries have had their thrusters replaced; the remaining two will be upgraded in 2021.

Rotor sail on M/V Copenhagen

In 2020, a 30-metre high rotor sail was installed on one of Scandlines’ ferries serving the Rostock-Gedser route to provide supplementary propulsion and reduce GHG emissions by a further 4-5%.

A proactive and innovative approach to a clean fleet has provided several long-term benefits

Scandlines’ investments in a greener fleet have brought several benefits, including

  • cost savings from higher fuel efficiency and lower maintenance costs
  • improved brand value, as passengers are increasingly conscious of the environmental impact of their travel
  • political awareness of the long-term role that ferries can play in a sustainable transport future

Did you know...

up to 15%
reduction of CO2 emissions

at least 90%
reduction of sulphur emissions

Lead environmental change – a clear commercial benefit

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