Richardson to become CEO of BSMA
Public works permanent secretary Francis Richardson is to join the Bermuda Shipping and Maritime Authority as chief executive officer. He will assume the role on April 9.
Mr Richardson is a marine engineer with 25 years of service to the Bermuda Government. He will replace Captain Pat Nawaratne, who has been acting CEO since the authority was launched in 2016.
Paul Scope, chairman of the BSMA, said: “Mr Richardson has all the credentials for the position and we're delighted to have hired a Bermudian after an extensive search, both locally and overseas,.
“Succession-planning was one of our top priorities, and we have now fulfilled this important goal.”
The BSMA is a semi-autonomous unit that replaces the government Department of Maritime Administration. It currently employs a team of 15 professionals in London and Bermuda.
Mr Richardson has a track record as a senior manager and director within the Government's civil service. He held the posts of Dockyard superintendent, Director of Marine and Ports, and permanent secretary of the Ministry of Tourism Development & Transport, and, currently, the Ministry of Public Works.
Prior to those postings, he spent eight-and-a-half years working at sea as a marine engineer on various types of ships engaged in international trade, and travelled in this capacity to countries around the world.
He holds a master's degree in Marine Operations and Management from City University of London.
Mr Richardson said: “Having previously worked in the maritime industry for many years, I'm thrilled and excited to be coming back to an area I am passionate about.
“I look forward to joining the team and working collectively to grow the Bermuda shipping registry and fulfil the objectives of the group.”
Mr Scope thanked Captain Nawaratne for his service as acting CEO. Captain Nawaratne will continue as BSMA's chief maritime surveyor.
Mr Scope added: “We'd also like to send our appreciation to the Bermuda Business Development Agency, which has worked closely with us during this period of transition to promote Bermuda's shipping industry and our world-class shipping registry.
“The BDA has been representing Bermuda shipping with industry stakeholders throughout this period, and we look forward to now developing that presence overseas under the BSMA banner.
“Since coming out of government, and forming the authority, we've had numerous tasks to address, such as finding appropriate office premises, changing accounting systems, and handling other operational issues as we converted from a government department to a public-private entity.”
He added: “With the new leadership in place, we're looking forward to moving forward and growing Bermuda's all-important registry, as well as complying with all the regulatory standards and conventions that are required.”
Bermuda's shipping registry is a Category 1 member of the prestigious British Red Ensign Group, supporting a worldwide portfolio of vessels. The fleet consist of large cruise ships, oil, gas and chemical tankers, container ships, bulk carriers, offshore vessels and megayachts.