By TGN Editorial Team
Our Executive Chairman, Olav Eek Thorstensen, received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Tanker Shipping & Trade Conference which was held in London on Tuesday 20th November.
Receiving the award Mr Thorstensen told the packed audience that although he was honoured to be recognised in this way, the fact that the Thome Group has been so successful over the years is not just down to him, but his award is recognition for all Thome personnel, both ashore and on board, whose dedication and hard work has helped the company’s success through the years.
He then went on to recall his early days in the shipping industry and remarked that when he joined Thome in 1976, it was mainly a provider of port agency, brokering and chartering services.
However, he soon realised there was huge potential for Thome to provide efficient ship management services to the mainly Scandinavian owners trading vessels in the Far East.
Since then he said the company has never looked back and he went on to compare its success to Singapore’s own expansion into a major global maritime centre, confirming his pride in the company’s long-standing association with the Republic.
In conclusion, he finished his speech by predicting that, within the next 10 years, there would be big changes in ship ownership, expecting to see other ownership structures, due to the lack of finance available from the more traditional institutions that used to invest in the maritime sector.
More vessels will be owned by asset management companies and they will require professional ship managers to run their fleets. So, this bodes well for the ship management sector especially if it is viewed by asset owners as more of a partnership arrangement rather than simply as a service provider.