Niels Smedegaard steps down as CEO of DFDS

Niels Smedegaard has decided to step down as CEO of DFDS at the end of April. Torben Carlsen, who has been the company’s CFO since 2009, will become the new CEO.

Niels Smedegaard has been CEO of DFDS since 1 January 2007. During his time at the helm, the company has grown significantly both in volume and profitability. Most recently with the acquisition of Turkish ferry operator UN Ro-Ro.

“My time at DFDS has been a fantastic journey, and I am proud of the progress that has been made for the company and its employees, customers, and shareholders since I joined. It has been a difficult decision to say goodbye but having managed the company for over 12 years, the time has come to move on and use my energy and experience in board position. DFDS is strongly positioned for the future, and I feel very confident about passing on the steering wheel to Torben and I wish him good speed for the future”, Smedegaard says.

“I owe everyone at DFDS – from the individual employees to the rest of the management team and the Board – a big thank you for the good years we have had together. We have shared many great experiences and overcome considerable challenges together. I will take all this with me.”

As CEO Smedegaard has also been very active within the European shipowners’ community and served as president of the European shipowners association ECSA from 2016 until 2018.

New CEO

Torben Carlsen is 53 and has a broad and international managerial background, with leading positions in Switzerland and the USA, primarily within the airline industry. In addition to this comes his experience from private equity.

Torben Carlsen says: “DFDS is a unique company with a long and exciting history, so I am proud that the board is placing its trust in me and I am humble about the task ahead. I am looking forward to working with the rest of the management and our many skilled colleagues to continue the good development of DFDS, based on the strategic plans we have developed in close cooperation with the board.”

Author: Tobias Pieffers

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