Fred White steps down as Sea Swift CEO

2 November 2020

The Sea Swift Board has announced that Chief Executive Officer Fred White has made the decision to retire from his role at the helm of Australia’s largest private shipping company.

In announcing Mr White’s departure, Sea Swift Chairman Steve Boulton thanked Mr White for his invaluable service and outstanding contribution to the Northern Australia marine transport company over the past 12 years.

“Fred has had a tremendously successful 12 years as leader of Sea Swift, overseeing a period of rapid growth and expansion, as well as changes in the market and customer needs,” said Mr Boulton.

“Under Fred’s leadership, Sea Swift has established itself as Australia’s largest private shipping business, and more importantly, with a reputation and culture that proudly puts ‘Keeping Northern Australia Connected’ first.

“The Board would like to take this opportunity to thank Fred for his enormous contributions.

“We are excited about the future of Sea Swift and are committed to building on the legacy that Fred has built to ensure the ongoing success and growth of the business.”

Mr White joined Sea Swift in January 2009 as CEO after spending 20 years in the mining industry, predominately in Mount Isa.

Since joining Sea Swift, Fred has successfully steered the company through the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), change of ownership, and expansion into the Northern Territory.

Mr White said the timing was right to step down at Sea Swift and open the door for another CEO to be appointed who will continue to drive the company forward.

“The recent transaction we completed with the sale of Sea Swift from Champ Ventures to the QIC Global Infrastructure Fund has, and will, set up Sea Swift, its employees and customers for a higher level of professional service well into the future,” said Mr White.

“In QGIF, we now have the ownership structure that will enable us to invest in necessary fleet and infrastructure that will see the region serviced very well for many decades to come.

“Now that the recent transaction is nearing the end of its transition period, I have had time to reflect on what has been achieved and the effort required to do so.

“As a result, I have decided it is finally time for me to take a break from the day-to-day high-level requirements that come with the CEO’s role.

“I am very pleased with our growth and what we have been able to achieve over the last 12 years since I was appointed as the CEO, and importantly how we are now set for even bigger and better things as Northern Australia continues to develop.”

Mr White said he now plans to spend extra time with his family, and travelling across northern Australia.

Mr White’s last day as CEO will be this Friday (6 November), with current Sea Swift Chief Operating Officer Lino Bruno to take on the role of Acting CEO.

Mr Boulton said the Board had started a formal executive search process for the permanent CEO role.

“The Board will be working closely with Lino to support him in the interim role, and we have full confidence in Lino and each employee to continue servicing our customers to the highest standards,” said Mr Boulton.