J Lauritzen has recruited Anders Bruun as its new investment director.

He joined the Copenhagen-based shipping investor on 1 March.

“It’s an exciting adventure for me where I can utilise my background both from driving and growing a company within the shipping industry as well as my background within finance,” Bruun told TradeWinds.

He founded and was previously chief executive of Coach Solutions, a company that provides vessel performance monitoring and weather routing systems.

Bruun and J Lauritzen chief executive Kristian Morch previously worked together at shipowner Clipper Group.

“The shipping focus aligns with my passion for the maritime industry where I can leverage my background,” Bruun said.

J Lauritzen’s main investment is Lauritzen Bulkers. The firm also has holdings in BW Epic Kosan, Cadeler, Dan Swift and the funds of Dee4 Capital Partners and Navigare Capital Partners.

Bruun’s responsibility will mainly be around privately held companies and investing directly in new companies within the shipping sector.

“That is to support these companies in their growth and supporting the green transition. But it’s from an investment point of view,” he said.

“J Lauritzen is an investment company where the holding companies will handle the operational part.”

Bruun explained the new position is an addition to the current investment team.

The new boss will specifically be focusing on investments in suppliers, manufacturers and software.

“Beyond ships, J Lauritzen recognises the critical role played by the supportive industries in the shipping ecosystem,” the group said.

By investing in these key players, the company aims to foster innovation, improve efficiency and contribute to sustainable practices across the industry, the executive explained.

Deals could include investments in infrastructure for alternative fuels, renewable technology or software and e-commerce.

Bruun told TradeWinds: “It’s important to note that the investments we make extend beyond just immediate gains. We are committed to sustainability, innovation and shaping the future of the maritime sector.”

He explained this can be seen in its investment last year in three methanol-powered kamsarmax bulkers chartered to Cargill.

J Lauritzen made a big profit when it sold the entire stake in product tanker giant Hafnia last year for NOK 324m ($29m).

J Lauritzen has reorganised itself as a maritime investment holding company under Morch, who joined in 2022.

“One of the advantages we have compared to a normal investment company is that we have this deep industry experience,” Bruun said.

Morch was previously the chief executive of Norway’s Odfjell and has also worked for several companies within AP Moller-Maersk.

“So we are more than just capital coming in. We can actually help the companies with our understanding and network. That makes us a bit unique,” Bruun said.

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