Svitzer has announced the appointment of a new chief executive as the AP Moller-Maersk subsidiary continues to expand its fleet
This comes as current global chief executive of Svitzer, Henriette Thygesen, concentrates further on running Maersk Fleet and strategic brands.
Kasper Friis Nilaus, current vice president and managing director of Svitzer Europe will succeed as global chief executive of Svitzer from 15 June. He will continue as head of Svitzer Europe until a new managing director is appointed.
Ms Thygesen expects Mr Nilaus to continue Svitzer’s strategies of fleet investment to meet global market growth. “Svitzer has a solid strategy in place and a number of exciting opportunities to respond to in the global market, and I am confident Kasper is the right person to continue Svitzer’s long history and to fulfil its potential going forward,” Ms Thygesen said.
“During his 13 years with Svitzer, Kasper has continuously delivered sturdy commercial and operational results in his various roles,” she continued.
He has also described strategic reasons for investing in remote control technology and autonomous tug operations, which TTB has witnessed at Svitzer’s base in the Copenhagen, Denmark.
“As CEO he brings to the table not only a profound understanding of the towage business, of safe and efficient operations and of our Svitzer people but also extensive commercial experience and a strong customer-oriented mindset,” said Ms Thygesen.
“With Kasper at the helm, Svitzer is in very capable hands and in an exciting position to continue the growth trajectory and further strengthen the services we deliver to our customers. I look forward to continuing the good collaboration and support Kasper in this new setup.”
Mr Nilaus joined Svitzer as business development manager in 2007. Since then, he has held various global and regional positions within commercial and general management, culminating in becoming managing director of Svitzer Europe.
He puts Svitzer’s success in tough markets down to its people and tug fleet. “These are challenging times for Svitzer and the industry in general, but we have what it takes to succeed,” said Mr Nilaus. “Over the past years, we have come a long way and I am very excited about the opportunity to take the company to the next level, together with a strong and dedicated organisation.”
“Safe and efficient operations, strong customer relations and an innovative approach to towage and technology is the way forward,” Mr Nilaus added.
Svitzer has been at the forefront of safety campaigns and is testing deck automation to reduce the risk of crew accidents.
“I am more than ready to roll up the sleeves and accelerate Svitzer’s trajectory in the years to come,” said Mr Nilaus.
In the UK, two Svitzer executives have taken leading roles in the British Tugowners Association (BTA).
Svitzer head of marine standards Scott Baker will become chairman, taking over from current chair Nick Dorman. In addition, Svitzer UK North cluster managing director Ita Dickson will join BTA’s executive committee.
Mr Baker has been at the centre of BTA’s drive to introduce safety procedures, including standard and visible line weights to prevent injury to tug deck crew during towage operations. “The maritime industry is fundamental to the UK economy, and towage plays an important part in the smooth movement of trade,” said Mr Baker, “I will be able to champion the interests of the UK’s diverse and thriving towage sector alongside the excellent team of maritime leaders both within the BTA and the UK Chamber of Shipping.”
He continued, “As we look to the future, we see a challenging and exciting period ahead for Britain’s towage industry. That’s why I believe it is vital that the BTA continues to ensure our voice is heard to put the towage sector front and centre in the critical infrastructure supply chain.”
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