Western Bulk Gets New CEO

bulkerIllustration. Image Courtesy: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license

Norwegian dry bulk vessel owner Western Bulk has appointed Hans Aasnæs as the new Chief Executive Officer of the company. 

The appointment, effective from July 1, 2019, comes after Jens Ismar, Western Bulk’s current CEO, stepped down on April 25 after nearly eleven years in the company.

During Ismar’s tenure, the company has grown and developed into one of the largest operators of dry bulk vessels in the Ultramax to Handysize segments operating a fleet of ~160 vessels worldwide.

Chief Risk Officer Egil Husby will take on the position as interim CEO until Aasnæs assumes his position as CEO.

Aasnæs previously held the position as Senior Vice President at Umoe Group and prior to that the position as CEO of Storebrand Asset Management for eight years. He has over the last thirty years accumulated significant experience from overseeing trading, asset management and derivatives activities.

“We believe Hans Aasnæs is the right candidate to take Western Bulk forward,” Bengt A. Rem, Chairman of the Board of Directors, said.

What is more, Western Bulk informed it recently secured new debt financing and raised USD 15 million in equity guaranteed by the two main shareholders Kistefos AS and Ojada AS. This is in an effort for Western Bulk to ensure a strong financial platform and support further growth.

As explained, the outstanding bond loan has now been repaid in full, allowing for a more optimal financial structure.

“The appointment of Mr. Aasnæs in combination with equity raise and improved financial structure enhances our ability to capture trading margins and positions the company very well for future success and profitability,” Rem concluded.

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