In a launch held on Tuesday 26th January at their new premises at the Valletta Waterfront, Bjoern Havnes, General Manager, Wilhelmsen Lines Malta Ltd. and Wilhelmsen Lines Shipowning Malta Ltd. spoke about the 155-year-old company that globally employs in excess of 28,000 persons.
He explained that the company has more than 330 offices around the world but proudly said that the one in Malta is his personal favourite, mentioning the magnificent views of the Mediterranean sea, the Grand Harbour and the historic bastions.
The Wilhelmsen family business is currently in its fifth generation and Mr Wilhelm Wilhelmsen, who spoke during the inauguration, is from the fourth generation. He referred to the rich company history and the relations it has with Malta. This relationship dates back to the times of the Second World War, with the HMS Talbot.
The company has eleven ships operating under Maltese flag. Five more ships are expected to join this coming year.
Wilhelmsen has some 140 vessels operating in the world, which together carry almost 23% of the global shipping cargo.
Valletta Cruise Port Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Xuereb said the works on this project started 18 months ago and reteriated Wilhelmsen's own wishes that the site is developed into a maritime hub.
President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca inaugurated the offices, and thanked the company for trusting in Malta and the Maltese people. She augured that Wilhelmsen who has been in Malta's history and in its present, will also actively be part of its future. President Coleiro Preca was presented with a donation of €10,000 for L-Istrina.