Swire Shipping will have a new managing director later this year, with Jeremy Sutton taking over from James Woodrow.

The Singapore-based shipowner, one of the oldest names in Asian shipping, said the time of the transfer is yet to be confirmed.

Woodrow is relocating to the UK to serve as managing director of Swire company James Finlay, which supplies tea, coffee and natural ingredients for the global beverage industry.

“I am extremely honoured to take the helm during Swire Shipping’s 150th year,” said Sutton, who is currently chief operating officer at Swire Shipping.

“With very supportive shareholders and a great leadership team, we intend to continue to focus on growing Swire Shipping’s three core operating businesses of liner, projects and landside, while maintaining an absolute focus on safety.”

Swire Projects, which was set up in October 2020 and provides specialist shipping services to the energy, resource and infrastructure sector, will also have a new man at the helm.

Chris Daniells has been appointed managing director of the Swire offshoot, which specialises in the multipurpose and heavylift segments. He will also remain chief commercial officer of Swire Shipping.

Late last year, China Navigation Co, which was founded in 1872 by John Swire & Sons, rebranded its shipping operations as Swire Shipping.

The company made a further foray into the US Pacific Northwest in April with the acquisition of breakbulk container company Westwood Shipping Lines.

It said the move was designed to widen its liner network while vertically integrating many of its shipping services with first and last-mile land services.

Westwood controls a fleet of four open-hatch handysize bulk carriers and a pair of 2,500-teu container ships, which are all chartered in.