Torben Østergaard-Nielsen's daughter Nina Østergaard Borris enters executive management at global shipping group United Shipping & Trading Company (USTC).
Borris, 36, is to take the position of chief operating officer at USTC. In this role, she will be responsible for optimizing and developing the group's operating companies in close collaboration with the firms' executive managers as well as Torben Østergaard-Nielsen.
That Nina now steps up as COO at USTC is the natural next step according to the laid-out plan
"That Nina now steps up as COO at USTC is the natural next step according to the laid-out plan, and I very much look forward to the gains Nina will bring as an important link in the future cooperation between USTC companies, Selfinvest Family Office and myself," says Østergaard-Nielsen in a statement.
Borris comes from a position as executive assistant responsible for M&A at Bunker Holding, which is part of the USTC group. Here, her focus areas were business optimization, strategy and M&A. Moreover, she is a member of the board of directors at SDK, Uni-Tankers – also owned by USTC – and at USTC.
Will neither sell nor list
After several years of strategy efforts, Østergaard-Nielsen decided in 2017 that the Selfinvest group, which encompasses USTC and other companies, will not be sold or listed but rather stay in the family. This decision was made via the family's company Selfinvest Family Office.
Since then, development plans have been made for the owner family's members, consisting of Torben Østergaard-Nielsen and his two daughters, Mia Østergaard-Nielsen and Nina Østergaard Borris.
Torben Østergaard-Nielsen has previously told ShippingWatch that he has placed certain demands on his daughters if they were to take leading positions in the group.
These demands are, however, not as rigid as those found at some other family-owned companies, where there may be requirements for a particular type of education and the amount of traveling or number of foreign postings needed to get to the top.
"They've been at the table for 20 years, so they know what's been going on. That could also help tip the scales. It will be an individual decision. But the important thing is that this has been addressed. We've also discussed how to handle disagreement. This doesn't necessarily mean that we can resolve it, but if one has talked about it and put words on it and thought about all kinds of scenarios, you've made strides," Østergaard-Nielsen told ShippingWatch.
English Edit: Jonas Sahl Jørgensen