Former Grindrod Shipping chief executive Martyn Wade has taken a board role at Danish dry cargo player Lauritzen Bulkers.

The experienced shipping man retired from Singapore bulker company Grindrod in April after 14 years.

Grindrod did not appear to be looking for a successor, causing speculation it was a takeover target.

The company was this week the subject of a $494m bid from London-listed bulker owner Taylor Maritime Investments, which already has a 26% stake.

Wade has “intensive” board experience, and serves as a director of the United Kingdom Freight Demurrage and Defence Association, Lauritzen said.

The new board member has 44 years of international shipping experience and has worked for vessel owners, operators and shipbrokers in London, Johannesburg, New York, and Singapore.

Prior to joining Grindrod, Wade spent time at brokers Van Ommeren and Simpson Spence Young (SSY), as well as Clipper Bulk and HSBC Shipping Services.

Lauritzen Bulkers chairman Kristian Morch said the company is pleased to add Wade to the board.

“He brings a vast industry experience and knowledge which I am sure will benefit us in the continuous development of the company,” Morch added.

The chairman is also CEO of holding company J Lauritzen after leaving Norwegian tanker owner Odjell earlier this year.

Purchase options

Lauritzen Bulkers has switched to an asset-light operating model, but that does not mean it will cease owning ships.

Chief executive Niels Josefsen told TradeWinds in February that the company will instead build its owned fleet to retain expertise.

The Danish group owns four handysizes but runs a fleet of anywhere in between 80 and 100 ships at any one time.

Josefsen explained that Lauritzen has a “number” of purchase options coming up as part of charter-in contracts.

These opportunities are available at “attractive prices”, he added.