Introducing Blue MBA Ambassadors

Blue MBA Ambassadors serve as leaders and liaison contacts for alumni and participants of the programme; to better connect our graduates to the unique shipping industry, Ambassadors are appointed in different regions and business segments to raise awareness of the programme’s mission to develop strategic capabilities of management in the maritime and associated industries. Or put more simply to develop the next generation of maritime CEO’s.

The Blue MBA Ambassadors:

Capt. Michael P. Elwert has worked within the global shipping industry his entire working life and has over two decades of international management experience within the maritime industry. He gained his education with Maersk in Copenhagen and grew his global shipping acumen and exposure working from Denmark, UK, Norway, South Africa, USA, Singapore, Korea and Japan as several other countries in Asia. 

As Global Chief Operating Officer and Deputy CEO V. ships, Michael was responsible to lead cross-functional efforts to drive scale, organizational alignment, efficiency, customer advocacy and consistent flawless service delivery across the V Group’s ship management BU. Acting in addition, as Deputy CEO reporting line for V Group ship management MD’s covering key critical business hubs in France, USA, UAE, Denmark and India. 

Prior to joining V.Group, Michael held various senior executive positions with Maersk, Thome Group, the Danish Shipowners’ Association and BIMCO to mention a few. Michael has held several BOD roles within the maritime cluster industry including more recently Dania Ship Management. Michael is a founding member of the Global HR Maritime Forum, ex-Executive Committee member of the Singapore Maritime Employers Federation, acting as Chairman for the ‘SMEF’ Strategy working Group as well as chairman for the Singapore Industry Working Group. Likewise, Michael was the lead strategist launching the successful Blue Denmark Maritime Industry recruitment and public awareness campaign. 

Currently, acting as a Senior Advisor to the industry, he offers his executive advisory services to Venture Capital, Private Equity players as Ship Owners and Ship Managers. 

Michael holds an EMBA in Shipping & Logistics from the Copenhagen Business University and a Masters in Nautical Science. 

As an executive in this industry, you need to be able to learn how to prioritise and the demands of this course force you to do just that. It’s the testing ground for managing your load and you need the support of your company and your family to achieve it. I didn’t have a weekend off for two years and I made a huge sacrifice to complete the course whilst in parallel running a full demanding day job – all of us did – but you need to really want it if you are to succeed. And you need to invest in yourself.” Read Michael’s feature >>

Thomas Damsgaard has had an exciting +30years shipping career, earning his stripes in a succession of increasingly challenging roles within senior management and leadership for market leaders such as the Clipper Group, Spliethoff Group, SAL, Scan-Trans and Inchcape. He has lead several start-ups and turnarounds within global maritime.

Damsgaard acts as an external advisor on leadership, strategy and optimization to global maritime and logistics organizations and serves on several professional boards.

An active member of the Houston community, he fills leading roles including for the Houston Maritime Arbitrators Association, Advisory Board at University of Houston; he co-founded the Danish American Chamber of Commerce and a non-for profit maritime scholarship fundraiser.

“Shipping used to be seen as a cyclical industry, with bursts and microbursts of opportunity that you need to grasp if you want to survive. But we’ve started to see a shift from a more traditional cyclical asset-based mindset to one recognizing that the human side of how the assets are used are increasingly important. Global shipping and logistics is changing more rapidly than anyone anticipated.” Read Thomas’ feature >>

Mr. Saunak Rai is heading “FueLNG”, a Joint venture of Shell and Keppel, a LNG bunkering company providing LNG as bunkers to customers through truck to ship and ship to ship operations, as well as carrying out LNG distribution to industry in Singapore. Mr. Saunak Rai is also the Deputy Chairman of the National Technical Committee for LNG Bunkering in Singapore. 

Mr. Saunak Rai graduated with President’s Gold Medal in Nautical Science from Mumbai University and has completed his Master’s in Business Administration from Copenhagen Business School, Denmark. Mr. Saunak Rai is a licensed Master Mariner and has extensive experience working on LNG vessels, Tankers, Bulk Carriers and Container vessels He is also a certified Chartered Ship Broker and Fellow and Executive Committee Member of the “Institute of Chartered Ship Brokers”. Saunak is also Singapore Ambassador of Copenhagen Business School.

Mr. Thorbjorn Reynir Gislason was born in Reykjavik, Iceland. He worked in the USA for 24 years and has been living and working in Lima, Peru for the past 14 years. His 40 year career has been in the International Transport and Distribution Logistics, small and large-scale distribution operations, container vessel service networks, land based transport systems, and in the formation of a new innovative regional and global supply chain system. For the past 14 years, he has owned and operated one of the largest international freight forwarding companies in Peru. In 2013, he joined the MBA Blue programme and graduated in August of 2015. He looks forward to sharing his passions and connecting with all shipping and logistics professionals.

“The industry’s experiencing an astonishing transition at the moment. We are going through an unprecedented consolidation, especially in container shipping, and this is driven by ecommerce like Alibaba and Amazon. Largely this is a result of Covid, which drove an anomalous fluctuation of demand. It is very exciting but having to adapt as an industry is remarkable.Read Reynir’s feature >>

Amado Mabasso is Chairman of the Board of Directors of I2A Investimentos focused on logistics processes, fuel, community relations, social development and institutional relations.

He has over 20 years of experience between mining and logistics in Mozambique, Malawi and Zambia. He has experience in the fuel sector in railway operations with emphasis on bunker and rail transport. He worked at Vale Mozambique from 2006 to 2011, having held various positions in the construction phase of the Moatize project, with emphasis on the assembly of the fuel supply system and its logistics. From 2012 to February 2018 was CEO of CDN – Corrdeor de desenvolemento do Norte (Mozambique) and CEAR – The Central East African Railways. 

Capt. Prashant has over 20 years of transformational leadership experience across geographies in the maritime, shipping and logistics industry. From being one of the youngest officers to command a fully laden gas tanker to come ashore with Maersk, where over the past five years he spearheaded the sustainability and shared-value responsible ship recycling programme aimed at creating opportunities globally for the benefit of workers and the environment, as well as responsible yards and shipowners. Through conceiving and implementing a robust standard and framework, he has played a pivotal role in uplifting standards at global ship recycling locations and particularly at Alang, India.

His team has responsibly selected, engaged and led the upgrade of facilities and the hinterland Alang area through relentless engagement efforts resulting in unprecedented impact. He holds a Degree in Nautical Sciences from BITS, Pilani and an Executive MBA in Shipping and Logistics from Copenhagen Business School (CBS) and has been awarded in leadership, business, community, and social impact categories by prestigious organisations. CBS appointed him the first Ambassador in India to strengthen the established links in business and academia between India and Denmark. He was named 2021 Class of 40 Under 40 Europe India Leaders – see here. 

“The Blue MBA, albeit a challenging assignment to embark on, is one that I would highly recommend to a top-quality maritime professional willing to invest significant efforts in staying ahead of the curve. With the acquired tools and experience, I feel the future is exciting and believe I am well-positioned to meaningfully contribute to our society, community, and the shipping industry at large as it moves into a decisive decade of large-scale sustainable organisational transformation.” Read Prahant’s feature >>

Profile coming soon.

Profile coming soon.