A flurry of sale-and-purchase activity in the small boxship sector is being fuelled by the largest provider of handysize tonnage.

Germany's Leonhardt & Blumberg Shipmanagement (L&B) has bought and sold a total of nine feeder containerships in recent weeks.

It is estimated to have paid out around $22m to acquire four 1,700-teu vessels and has also sold a handful of smaller ice-class feeder vessels.

The moves keep the Hamburg-based company at the top of the list of handysize tonnage providers, with a fleet of approximately 40 containerships.