01 August 2011
Article from Børsen
PORTRAIT: CEO of the known marine design and consulting firm in Elsinore, KNUD E. HANSEN, Finn Wollesen, who turns 50 today is a man with salt water in the blood. This has been from the outset of his career that started at sea as a sailor with the shipping company J. Lauritzen.
At the time the aim was to proceed to stay on the high seas and to become a mate. But it was nevertheless within the equally exciting and international marine design and consulting industry that he has spent his professional career. He has worked both as an employee and has operated his own design and consulting firm.
After sailing on J. Lauritzen Reefer vessels and Nella Dan – which sailed expedition voyages in Antarctica – Finn Wollesen was trained as a mechanical engineer at Aarhus Technical College, Denmark. The first step in his career was the HVAC equipment supplier Novenco, Denmark, where Finn Wollesen worked in the maritime department, on projects for the international maritime market.
If Finn Wollesen’s desire for travel had not been satisfied while at the Lauritzen shipping company, he got it largely covered by Novenco where he was stationed in several places including Spain, Singapore and Italy.
After the Italian posting Finn Wollesen embarked on a new adventure when he and his colleague Per Ghodt started their own marine design and consultancy. Marine Technologies was the name of company, which in 2003 was merged into the Danish marine industry’s most renowned and respected company KNUD E. HANSEN, founded in 1937 by Mr. Knud E. Hansen, now based in a beautiful classical building on Claessensvej in Elsinore, Denmark. That same year Finn Wollesen could again write CEO on his business card.
KNUD E. HANSEN has 35 employees in the home office in Denmark – designers, naval architects and mechanical engineers, who are busy with design and consultancy worldwide. In addition, the company has offices in London, Ft. Lauderdale in Florida and Perth in Australia as well as representative offices in Piraeus in Greece and Tórshavn in the Faroe Islands.
All in all a very multicultural environment, where the old sailor and traveled CEO thrives in a very international atmosphere. He is also in the fortunate situation that his job is also his hobby, so much of his waking hours take place in marine design and consultancy.
The company is also, according to him in the favourable situation, that shipping companies and other maritime organisations currently give many orders. As a consequence of the market situation, KNUD E. HANSEN experience a positive flow on effect. In other words: the order book is well filled and there are tasks planned far ahead.
Right now, Finn Wollesen is again on the move in the big world – but this time on vacation, which is in California where he enjoys life with his wife Camilla Breum, who is a graphic designer in Copenhagen and their two daughters aged 19 and 16 years. Wanderlust is still in the blood, and much of the family vacations are allocated to exotic destinations such as California, Colombia, Australia, etc. Vacation will however hardly go to a little island group in Antarctica. Finn Wollesens father, who was a sailor and sailed many years with the shipping company J. Lauritzens polar ship, achieved the honour that the “Wollesen Islands” group was named after him.
Sports are also part of Finn Wollesen’s busy life including running, but not any watersports, although salt water certainly still runs through the veins of the old sailor.