Thome Group, the first independent ship manager to establish in Singapore, proudly celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
Incorporated in the Republic in 1963 and establishing Thome Ship Management’s Singapore headquarters in 1976, Thome has attributed its longevity and world class reputation to combining the best of two worlds: generations of family experience in Scandinavian shipping tradition, and the modern drive of a fully integrated Asian private business enterprise.
With more than 300 vessels either crewed or under full technical management, around 10,000 seafarers employed and offices all over the world, the group continues to pledge personal service to owners combined with an ability to deliver high value, bespoke technical and operational services.
In more recent times, Thome Group has expanded its ship agency business, moved into the offshore oil and gas sector and has seen its maritime consultancy arm score notable successes in the area of newbuilding supervision.
At the start of a year of celebration, Thome Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Olav Eek Thorstensen (pictured) spoke about what he would like the company to achieve in the next 12 months and beyond.
He said: “Thome Group has come a long way in recent times. Two major developments in that expansion have been the growth of Thome Oil and Gas and our decision to expand our presence overseas. While Singapore remains our home base and Manila our main crewing and training centre, more recently we have extended our global reach via new offices and joint ventures.”
Thome most recently launched a joint venture crewing operation in India together with several respected partners.
“We have also set up operations in Indonesia, Thailand, Croatia and other shipping centres, plus a recent joint venture in Korea. All are beginning to produce great value for Thome,” Mr Thorstensen added.
Looking ahead, he said the global shipping market would most likely continue to face a tough time in 2013, although things look brighter for the oil and gas sector.
He said: “The outlook remains hard for global shipping. Owners rightly continue to seek value from the managers they entrust with their assets.
“At Thome we shall continue to deliver the highest quality management service with focus on safety and a flawless operation.”
He said one of the aspects of Thome’s development has been the continuous high level of investment in training and education, and this will continue into 2013 and beyond.
“We firmly believe in the Human Element in our training. Our focus is on developing our shore-based and sea-going talent as this is something which truly sets us apart from our competitors,” he added.
This year will also see Thome build its presence in China. Mr Thorstensen confirmed there is growing interest in third party shipmanagement services among Chinese owners. A number of Chinese owned ‘Kamsarmax’ drybulk carriers have been added to the Thome-managed fleet.
In May, the group will hold a special celebratory reception for Singaporean and international clients. There will be a concurrent celebration in Manila, the group’s largest regional operation outside Singapore, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.
In August, further celebrations will be held in Oslo and Copenhagen. Across 2013, senior Thome executives will demonstrate their industry leadership by speaking about maritime issues and group’s global plans at key industry conferences in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, China, India, and Russia.