Knutsen OAS Shipping’s deputy boss, Synnove Seglem, has taken over as the Norwegian group’s managing director.

She replaces long-serving Nils Kristian Strom, who has retired.

The Haugesund-based company, whose main shareholder is her father, Trygve Seglem, controls LNG carriers and shuttle tankers.

The new chief, 43, told the Haugesund Avis daily that with large new construction projects and increasing environmental requirements, she is looking forward to Knutsen OAS’ future.

“I am very optimistic about the future of the shipping company. We are experiencing great growth and it is an exciting and interesting time,” she added.

Strom joined the group in 2022 and has nearly 40 years of experience in shipping and energy.

He previously worked for energy major Statoil.

Seglem has been contacted for further comment.

She joined in 2011, following a stint as a maritime consultant and surveyor at class society DNV from 2004.

Seglem has a master’s in shipping, trade and finance from Cass Business School, renamed Bayes Business School, in the UK.

Running the LNG fleet

In 2022, the new boss took over the group’s LNG carrier and product tanker operations.

Sister Jorunn runs Knutsen Ballast Water Tankers. The sisters also have stakes in the business.

Synnove Seglem told TradeWinds in 2022 that she wanted to be an engineer as a student.

But she had been attending industry events and visiting shipyards with her father since the age of eight and already had the shipping bug.

She said her first day at work for Knutsen came at the age of 12 when she became godmother to her first ship, the stainless-steel chemical tanker Synnove Knutsen.

In 2022, she became only the second female president of the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association, before passing on the torch earlier this year to Odfjell CEO Harald Fotland.

Seglem enjoys an active outdoor lifestyle, including skiing, hiking and anything near the water. She skied competitively when younger and is now coaching her kids.

She describes herself as “easy-going”, “very positive” and “outgoing”.

Those who know her say she is “very knowledgeable, with a razor-sharp focus”.

Exiting product tankers

In January, Knutsen OAS exited what it viewed as the non-core product tanker sector in a sales agreement with Canada’s Algoma Central Corp.

The company’s last two clean carriers, the 16,600-dwt Liv Knutsen and Eli Knutsen (both built 2009), were offloaded for towards $27m en bloc.

In 2023, accounts revealed the company achieved record results in healthy gas and tanker markets.

The Seglem family’s private shipping empire produced a net profit of $626m in 2022, against $560m the year before.

Revenue passed $1bn for the first time at $1.02bn, up from $880m in 2021.

Earnings from the Knutsen NYK Offshore Tankers shuttle tanker fleet, owned 50% with Japan’s NYK, came in at $320m, against $287m 12 months earlier.

The LNG carriers logged a profit of $301m, versus $268m in 2021.

The group has also formed a new company, Knutsen NYK Carbon Carriers, with NYK to enter the CO2 shipping sector.