Port development company: Role and strategy
This chapter applies a strategic management perspective on the port authority and introduces a paradigm shift in thinking about the particular organisation: from port authority to port development company. Port authorities were traditionally organised in the public, governmental domain but have developed into mere market-oriented organisations; they are often still of a public or semi-public nature, but act in a highly competitive environment and more frequently change into more commercial undertakings. Port authorities or actually port development companies are the organisations that are primarily responsible for the development, management and control of the seaport. In most ports in the world, they act as landlords. This means that the port development company of a particular port is primarily responsible for the provision and management of the port area and the nautical access. The commercial or service-related activities are done by private companies located in the port. 1 But this strict landlord model is increasingly being blurred. Induced by changes in the port development companies’ environment, economically and also institutionally, many of them face new challenges. As a consequence of these challenges many port development companies have had to reconsider their role and position or are in the midst of doing so. This chapter sheds a light on the transformation of port development companies - institutionally and in terms of their role and strategy.