Who’s Who: Maritime Movements for September/October 2020


Netherlands-based ferry operator Rederij Doeksen will have a new director when HR and hospitality head Dirk Spoor takes over from Paul Melles, who will retire in December 2020 after having been with the company for 34 years.

Dirk first joined Rederij Doeksen in 2010. As technical director, he is also set to manage the activities of sister companies Waterbus and Royal Huisman.

Wasaline has appointed Tony Ehrs as its new director of cargo, reporting directly to managing director Peter Ståhlberg. He had earlier worked as sales manager for Viking Line cargo and was the cargo sale manager responsible for the Turku-Stockholm route.

Tony took up his new position effective November 1.

BMT has named Peter Behrendt as its global director of strategy and innovation. He joined BMT in 2017 as managing director of the company’s Australian Defence and Security business, a role that he has now handed to Chelly Lister, who has been with BMT since 2018.

Peter is an experienced business leader whose background includes operational, commercial, and business development positions within a number of international companies, including spending nine years with Saab. In his new role as director of strategy and innovation, he will lead the team responsible for developing, executing, and articulating BMT’s corporate strategy.

Ian McMillan will assume his post as the new chief operating officer of Austal Australia in January 2021, following the transition of Patrick Gregg to CEO and managing director at around that same time.

Ian will have responsibility for Austal’s Australia, Philippines, and Vietnam shipbuilding and sustainment operations, as well as management of Austal’s interests in the Aulong commercial shipbuilding joint venture in China. He joins Austal from BAE Systems Australia, where he has held several senior executive roles since 2013, including director of shipbuilding and general manager, Shipyards Western Australia.

UK-based Discover Ferries has appointed Abby Penlington as director and Nigel Wonnacott as chair after Emma Batchelor and Kevin George have stepped down.

Penlington has been head of marketing at Discover Ferries since November 2018 and has 14 years’ experience in the cruise and tourism sectors. The move follows Emma Batchelor’s departure in mid-September, after three years at the organisation.

Wonnacott, who is also group head of external communications at Brittany Ferries, took up the newly-created position of vice chair of Discover Ferries in February. He recently accepted the role of chair following Kevin George’s decision to step down after five years in the post.

Todd West has been named vice president of In-Service Aircraft Carrier Programs for the Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division. He will succeed Chris Miner, who will retire on December 1, 2020, after more than 37 years of service.

On November 1, West assumed his new role leading the planning and execution of aircraft carrier refueling and complex overhauls and aircraft carrier fleet support. He also will be responsible for Newport News’ industrial subcontract at the Kenneth A. Kesselring Site, a research and development facility in West Milton, New York, that supports the US Navy’s nuclear propulsion program. West will report to Matt Needy, vice president of Navy Programs.

West, who serves as USS George Washington program director, brings 35 years of shipyard experience and in-depth knowledge of program, construction and overhaul experience to the position. He began his career as an engineer and has served in both engineering and construction leadership roles. West earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Old Dominion University.

Ørsted has appointed David Hardy as the new CEO of Ørsted Offshore North America. He will immediately replace Thomas Brostrøm, stepping into this position after serving as the company’s president and COO.

As CEO, Hardy will oversee all North American offshore wind activities, including development and operations for Ørsted’s current and future portfolio of US projects.

Prior to joining Ørsted, Hardy held US and global senior executive roles in the wind energy industry working in leadership positions at both Senvion and Vestas. He also spent a large portion of his career at GE in commercial leadership positions, as well as roles at other high-tech industrial companies. Additionally, he served for more than eight years in the US Navy submarine community.

Robert Gillespie has been appointed as the new managing director of Ocean Installer (UK). He will lead the company’s UK office based in Aberdeen.

Bob Gillespie has 27 years’ experience in the international offshore oil and gas and offshore wind industries, including senior positions with Fugro, TechnipFMC, McDermott and most recently as managing director for DOF Subsea UK.

Ingrid Uppelschoten Snelderwaard will take up the role of global COO of Svitzer, reporting to CEO Kasper Friis Nilaus, on December 1, 2020. She will be joining Svitzer from her current position as global head of equipment and VP in Maersk and she will be taking over after Svitzer’s current COO, Leonardo Sonzio, who will be moving on to become head of fleet Operations in Maersk.

Ingrid holds a degree in economics and languages followed by a degree in business management from Nyenrode University in the Netherlands. Apart from her current role as global head of equipment in Maersk, she has most recently held Maersk Line positions as managing director for Eastern Central Europe and trade manager for North America to/from Mediterranean.

Colin McMurray, the former managing director of Clyde Marine Training and director of the Clyde Group, has joined Stream Marine Training (SMT) as its group managing director.

Colin’s career started at sea with BP Shipping where he rapidly progressed through the ranks to chief officer and fleet training officer with Seacat containers, before returning ashore and joining Clyde Marine Training in 2004. He became managing director of the company in 2008. Under his leadership the company expanded rapidly, incorporating a number of new business areas and services before being sold in 2016 to Northern Marine Group under Stena.

He stayed on as director for a further four years and continued to generate additional business opportunities including forming Clyde Training Solutions, the Offshore, Marine and Renewables training division.

He is also a founding director of the Scottish Maritime Cluster, currently chair of the International Association of Maritime Institutions and is a board member of the Merchant Navy Training Board (MNTB). Most recently he was appointed as a commissioner on the Maritime Skills Commission.

Margareth Øvrum, executive vice president of Equinor Development and Production Brazil, has been appointed to the board of directors of TechnipFMC.

Ms Øvrum has over 38 years of experience at Equinor. She has held a succession of leadership positions at Equinor including president of Equinor Brazil from 2018 to 2020.

Ms Øvrum is currently on the board of directors of FMC Corporation. She previously served on the boards of directors of Alfa Laval from 2015 to 2019, Atlas Copco from 2008 to 2017, and Ratos  from 2009 to 2014. She holds a master of science degree in technical ohysics from the Norwegian Technical University (now part of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology).

Paolo d’Amico

Paolo d’Amico, executive president of d’Amico Società di Navigazione, is the new chairman of Registro Italiano Navale, following the previous appointment as vice chairman and member of the board of directors. He replaces Gaspare Ciliberti and will serve as chairman until 2023.

Other appointments include Luigi Merlo of Confcommercio as the new vice chairman; Flavio Bregant, Cristina Castellini, and Vincenzo Petrone as members of the executive committee; and Roberto Cazzulo as secretary general.

Ribcraft RIBs has been bought by UK entrepreneur Toby Adams, who is set on expanding on the company’s success in the governmental, military and securities sectors as well as placing a larger emphasis on environmental sustainability.

Toby was introduced to Ribcraft in 2009 when co-founding the global franchise The Yellow Boats. Among the projects he will focus on is environmental sustainability through carbon offsetting and the launch of a new range of hybrid-powered patrol boats.

Benjamin Sward has been appointed as president of Fort Lauderdale-based Foreship to take responsibility for the company’s US activities. He will also have oversight of the company’s Seattle operations.

The appointment sees a return to Foreship for Sward, who served the company as a naval architect and project manager between 2015 and 2018 and led a variety of upgrade projects for high-profile cruise clients such as Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Celebrity Cruises.

Tallink Grupp has appointed Joonas Joost as the group’s head of finance with effect from September 7, 2020.

Mr Joost first joined Tallink Grupp’s finance department as an analyst in 2005, being promoted to the role of the company’s head of investor relations in 2007 and working in the company until 2008. Following the roles in Tallink Grupp, he worked first as an analyst for Evli Securities in 2008-2009 and later provided consultancy services for Evli Bank in 2010-2012.

Christophe Mathieu

Brittany Ferries CEO Christophe Mathieu has been elected as the new chair of the board of directors of trade association Interferry at the association’s annual general meeting on October 27. He succeeds John Steen-Mikkelsen, former CEO of Denmark’s Danske Faerger.

Mr Mathieu, an Interferry board member since 2010, joined the French ferry operator in 1992 and worked in a wide variety of roles – including finance, operations, marketing and strategy – before becoming CEO in 2016. He has a master’s degree in management science from Paris 1 University and is a graduate of the International Executive Program at leading business school INSEAD.

Supapan Pichaironarongsongkram

The meeting also confirmed the appointment of a new director extending Southeast Asia representation on the board: Supapan Pichaironarongsongkram, chair of the Bangkok-based Supatra Group and its Chao Phraya Express Boat and Chao Phraya Tourist Boat subsidiaries.

Jon Fredrik Baksaas

Jon Fredrik Baksaas, the former CEO of Telenor, has been appointed as DNV GL’s new chair of the board.

Although best known for his thirteen-year tenure as CEO and president of the telecoms firm, Mr Baksaas started his career with DNV (as it was then known) and spent six years at the company before leaving in 1985. He has also served as member of the DNV Council for 12 years.

Lasse Kristoffersen

Current board member Lasse Kristoffersen will take over as vice chair. He brings a wealth of experience from the maritime industry and is currently the CEO and president of Torvald Klaveness Group. He has been a member of the board since 2017 and previously spent eleven years working for DNV GL.

Ingvild Sæther

In addition, two new persons will join the board. Ingvild Sæther is the president and CEO of Altera Infrastructure (formerly known as Teekay Offshore) and was part of the oil and gas industry’s representation on the DNV council.

Christian Venderby will bring experience from the renewable energy sector to the board. He has spent almost fifteen years with wind experts Vestas, and is currently its executive vice president for service and previously held the roles of CFO and COO.


Libra Group recently promoted Nicholas Georgiou to CEO of its Lomar Shipping business. He has been the company’s chief operating officer since 2010 and succeeds Achim Boehme, who tragically lost a year-long battle with cancer in July.

Mr Georgiou began his career in shipping in 1995 with Golden Union Shipping in Greece, a specialist in dry bulk carriers. He gained a breadth of experience in every aspect of ship ownership and management during his 15 years with the company. He joined Golden Union’s chartering division in 2001, where he was engaged in all aspects of chartering including interaction with the company’s legal division regarding claims handling.

As COO at Lomar for the past decade, he has been responsible for all of the company’s day-to-day commercial, technical and operational activities.

Mr Georgiou is also a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers and holds an economics-based degree from UCL in London.

Maritime law firm Hill Dickinson has hired Ian Teare for its marine and trade practice with effect from 2021.

Ian joins from Wikborg Rein’s Singapore office where he has been both managing partner and led the casualty response practice for Asia. Following his return to Europe from South East Asia, Ian will split his time between Hill Dickinson’s London and Piraeus shipping practices.

Ian’s practice spans both wet and dry shipping disputes and marine insurance matters although he is best known for his investigation and handling of marine casualties. With a background in naval architecture to degree level, he has been investigating marine casualties for almost 30 years. High-profile cases with which he has been associated include the Antea/Star Centurion collision off Singapore in 2019 and the well-reported grounding of the containership Rena in New Zealand in 2011.

ZIM Integrated Shipping Services has appointed Yair Seroussi as chairman of the company’s board of directors. He replaces Aharon Fogel, who is stepping down after serving more than six years as the company’s chairman.

Mr Seroussi brings with him vast business experience, having served in various senior positions in both the public and private sectors. He served as chairman of Bank Hapoalim, Israel’s largest bank, in 2009-2016, and was head of Morgan Stanley Israel in 1993-2009. Currently, Mr Seroussi is, among others, chairman of Enlight Renewable Energy.

Shipping law firm Wikborg Rein has appointed Ina Lutchmiah as the new managing director of its Singapore office.

Lutchmiah already heads up Wikborg Rein’s transactional practice in the Asia Pacific region which encompasses both shipping and offshore energy projects including renewables. She works for a number of international clients and is well-known for her expertise in LNG projects and regulatory work in connection with ship and rig recycling.

Tanker operator Athenian Holdings has appointed Jens Martin Jensen as its new CEO.

Jens previously held high profile positions, as CEO at Frontline Management and Premuda Spa, as well as senior executive roles at New Fortress Energy, Maersk/A.P. Moller group, Pillarstone Europe and Island Shipbrokers Singapore.

Boris Gronenberg has been named managing director of the Hamburg operations of marine fuels service provider KPI OceanConnect.

Mr Gronenberg has over 25 years of experience in the shipping and marine fuels industry in Germany.

Baird Maritime

The best maritime site on the web. The sea's our scene!