Geest Line returns to Portsmouth
Friday September 6th, 2019
Eastern Caribbean shipping firm Geest Line is returning to Portsmouth two years after relocating to Dover.
The company moved its cargo handling operation to the Kent port due to scheduling difficulties at Portsmouth, which have now been resolved.
Geest Line’s headquarters and its 32 staff remained in Hampshire and bosses say it makes logistical and business sense to return.
Its fleet handles all kinds of general cargo from tiny perishables to large project machinery, both container and breakbulk, returning from the Caribbean with fruit, mainly bananas, for the UK and European markets.
Managing director, Capt Peter Dixon, said: “Changes at Portsmouth mean it can now handle our larger and modified service and it makes sense to return. We’re grateful to the port and people of Dover and look forward to re-engaging with the port and people of Portsmouth.”
Portico is Portsmouth’s international cargo operator, a council-owned business which strengthens the city’s global trade position.
It’s located within Portsmouth International Port, the closest south coast port to main shipping channels.
Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, leader of Portsmouth City Council, said: “We’re delighted to welcome back Geest to the city after securing a long-term contract. This strengthens Portsmouth’s reputation for international trade and demonstrates the importance of investing in Portico, so it can provide a return on investment for the city and protect jobs.
“The wider Solent region will also benefit from Portico’s growth, providing opportunities in the supply chain and also establishes the city’s position as a serious industry competitor.
Steve Williams, Portico’s operations director, said: “We’re looking forward to working with Geest once again. Our partnership with Geest fits perfectly with our business ambitions. It’s about making sure we have long-term, sustainable, agreements, investing in the right equipment and providing the very best for our customers”.