Oceanwide Acquires Subsidiary of Barber International

Wednesday, October 22, 2003
Oceanwide, the leading international employment agency in the maritime field, announced today the acquisition of Norsk Bemanning AS from Barber Ship Management, a company within the Barber Group. With this acquisition OceanWide adds another subsidiary office to its already fast network of worldwide employment offices. The new subsidiary will operate under the name Oceanwide Norway AS. Norsk Bemanning is the crewing company of Barber Ship Management for their pool of Norwegian Officers. The total crew managed by Norsk Bemanning covers about 400 people. The existing office staff of 9 people will be transferred to Oceanwide Norway and the crew will remain employed by Barber Ship Management.The crew sails on board almost every type and size of vessel within the Barber Group, Wallenius Lines, Wilh. Wilhelmsen and PGS. "Being a market leader - today more than ever - requires local presence in the major shipping nations of the world. Adding a subsidiary in Norway is naturally of major importance to the future of Oceanwide”, says Leendert van Halst, Director Maritime Division of OceanWide. “This acquisition emphasizes Oceanwide’s business plans, especially with regard to our penetration plans in the Scandinavian market”, he adds. Commenting on today’s announcement Wijnand van Gessel, Group CEO, said: “The Norwegian market is comparable to the Dutch shipping market, where we have been operational since 1975 and where we have established a solid position and experience”. “It is our aim is to serve the Norwegian offshore market and the small and medium sized shipping markets on West coast of Norway through this acquisition and be able to make a valuable contribution to clients in this region”, he adds. “We believe that by outsourcing our Norwegian crewing operations to Oceanwide our organisation will be able to manage its crewing activities more effectively and efficiently" says Pål Andresen, Managing Director Barber Ship Management AS in Oslo. “The outsourcing of Norwegian officers is in line with our global strategy to outsource crewing to third party providers who are able to offer more efficient and flexible service. All our agents are long term partners and we expect Oceanwide to be a valuable addition to these”, he adds. Adding a subsidiary in Norway is an important stepping stone for Oceanwide. The concept of introducing flexible crew staffing is new to this market. Oceanwide Norway is expected to be operational by November and the new offices will be situated in Oslo at Drammensveien 134.

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