Norwegian maritime player Wilhelmsen shifts focus to renewables
Norwegian maritime industry group Wilhelmsen has embarked on a major organisation redesign project in an effort to increase focus on renewable energy and decarbonisation.
“Our strategy is very clear, we will contribute to the energy infrastructure transition and be an active player in decarbonisation,” Thomas Wilhelmsen, group CEO at Wilhelmsen, pointed out.
“In addition to accelerating the transition of our existing businesses, we will invest in new businesses with the long-term aim of shifting from mainly oil and gas related activities to mainly activities related to the renewable sector.”
“We foresee up to USD 500 million in new business investments related to the renewable segments over the next five years and expect to invest on our own, together with partners, and/or utilise the capital market.”
New Energy segment
The new segment, which has been named New Energy, will be headed up by Jan Eyvin Wang, currently senior vice president for strategic investments.
As explained, the establishment of the New Energy segment is a continuation of several years of exploring renewable opportunities. This includes the ongoing transformation of NorSea, the establishment of offshore wind activities through NorSea Wind, Edda Wind, and Elevon, autonomous shipping through Massterly, decarbonisation solutions through RaaLabs, Ivaldi, the partnership with thyssenkrupp, and latest the vessel concept Topeka to mention some, which aims to be a pivotal point for commercial vessels running on hydrogen.
“In the next few decades, we will see a tremendous shift from oil and gas to renewable energy. The speed of change and investments needed, requires a dedicated focus to capitalise on the opportunities which will arise…We want to establish a strong growth platform for solutions that will contribute to decarbonise our industry,” according to Wilhelmsen.
Future plans for maritime services segment
“We are equally committed to continue to expand our top tier position as a supplier of sustainable maritime services and products. With a global reach and access to more than 50% of the world’s merchant fleet, we are in a unique position to have a positive impact on the whole industry,” the company further said.
This is a responsibility we take seriously, and we also foresee substantial investments in this segment to truly live up to our mission as the enabler of sustainable global trade.”
The maritime services segment, to be headed by Bjørge Grimholt, currently president of Wilhelmsen Ships Service, is expected to explore organic and horizontal growth of marine products, ship agency, and ship management over the next three to five years. Grimholt will simultaneously become member of the group management team.
Founded in 1861, the Wilhelmsen group operates the largest maritime network on the planet, with over 2,200 locations worldwide.