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‘Retirement is not an option for me’: John Fredriksen

Busy as ever, John Fredriksen says he will stay in the day-to-day business of shipping for another three to five years at least.

In a rare interview with the Financial Times, the Norwegian tycoon vowed to see through the restructuring of his troubled rig unit, Seadrill. Fredriksen said Seadrill was his most compilicated transaction he has been involved in during his half century in shipping.

Despite his advancing age, Fredriksen has rarely been busier, trying to snap up VLCC rival DHT last week (a deal that was rebuffed today), agreeing to merge his OSV unit Deep Sea Supply today while also on the hunt for distressed dry bulk assets. Nevertheless, it is Seadrill and its $8bn of debts that Fredriksen said is consuming most of his time.

“I have to see this through and also a few other situations,” Fredriksen told the Financial Times.

“Retirement is not an option for me, at least for the next three to five years.”

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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