Ben Line Agencies’ global partner – WaterFront carves new territory with Houston move

18 July 2019 – Global port agency business, WaterFront Maritime Services (WaterFront) has today opened a local agency office in Houston, Texas. The company, which is one of the world’s largest port agency networks, says its Houston office has been established to help charterers, owners, and operators to manage their risk in this strategically important high-volume location.

WaterFront’s Houston office is managed by newly appointed Director for North America Lars Westerberg, a port agency industry veteran who was formerly Regional Director Americas for Seven Seas and Managing Director of Wallem Americas. Prior to these roles, Westerberg also served as Regional Managing Director of Inchcape Shipping Services in North and Central America.

The team in WaterFront’s Houston office will attend vessels directly from Corpus Christi to Lake Charles, including all terminals and all facilities. The Houston office will also serve as the regional hub for WaterFront in North, South and Central America including the Caribbean and is linked to WaterFront’s existing regional hubs in Dubai and Kuala Lumpur to provide 24-hour coverage to its global client base.

Terry Gidlow, Chief Executive Officer of WaterFront, commented:

“On a global basis we see how significant political developments, evolving trade policies and rapid shifts in the supply and demand of raw materials and bulk commodities are impacting traditional trade patterns. Meaning our clients are faced with a whole new range of opportunities and challenges in executing their day to day business. With the opening of our Houston office we are able to bolster the presence we have in other major oil & gas import/export and refining centres such as the Middle East and in Asia.”

The WaterFront global network currently handles more than 45,000 port calls per year through a network of 483 offices in 93 countries worldwide. Unlike other global agencies, Waterfront focuses on providing port and husbandry services for vessels transporting coal, grains, iron ore, minor bulks as well as crude oil, clean and dirty products, chemicals and gas. The company also handles the husbandry requirements of 3rd party and in-house ship managers.

WaterFront’s Director for North America, Lars Westerberg, commented:

“By focusing on specific commodities, we can work with customers operating in this region to add quantifiable value to their businesses. Our work is all about understanding our clients business and their  specific needs and then using our local knowledge and relationships to assist them to mitigate their risk, turn their vessels and cargoes around faster and save them money, while maintaining the highest levels of  safety and compliance.”

Terry Gidlow, chief executive officer of WaterFront, added:

“Lars and his team in Houston bring to the table decades of local experience and relationships in ports and terminals throughout Texas. The Regional Hub function of the Houston office also serves to give our clients in North and South America better access to our Global network.

WaterFront was established by leading regional ship agency businesses Sharaf Shipping Agencies and Ben Line Agencies in 2016. WaterFront is headquartered in Dubai with commercial offices in China, Singapore, Dubai, Norway and the USA. WaterFront has strategic partnerships in the rest of North and South America with renowned local partners such as ACGI on the west Coast of the US and Canada, UNIMAR in Brazil and the Ultramar group in Spanish-speaking South America. For more information about the organisation, visit

Ben Line Agencies handles French Navy Ship in Penang

Ben Line Agencies Malaysia had the privilege to handle the French Navy Anti-Submarine Frigate Latouche-Treville at Penang in June 2019. This is the first time that a French Navy Ship (FNS) called at Penang, as usually the France naval ships previous visit were either at Port Klang or Kota Kinabalu.

The frigate and several other naval ships (including 1 civilian ship) were part of a mission to escort their French nuclear-powered Aircraft Carrier Charles De Gaulle on her visit to South East Asia. Only the FNS Latouche-Treville made a stop-over at Penang for a week from May 27 to June 2.

The crew of FNS Latouche-Treville was very pleased with the services provided in Penang, that the Commanding Officer (CO) of the ship – Capt. Matthieu Dejour sent a thank you note to us thru the French Embassy office in Kuala Lumpur. The note also expresses his gratitude towards Rashid who is from Ben Line Agencies Penang for assisting his injured crew, even after the ship had left Penang. According to the French Embassy Assistant Defence Attache-Samuel Yvon that it is rare for a CO to send such a thank you note to a ship agent. Samuel believes this gesture is the result of Ben Line team committed towards providing a very good service to FNS Latouche-Treville & her crew. Samuel’s boss – Colonel (T) Jean Francois Schoonmann, Defence Attache in Malaysia is also happy with the good services provided in Penang.

Thank You Letter

Subang Jaya Medical Centre Charity Run

The staff and Senior Management of Ben Line Agencies Malaysia had participated in a charity run organised by Subang Jaya Medical Centre last Sunday, 7 Jul 2019, The run, simply called SJMC Run 2019 brought together participants from all walks of life. We’d like to thank our Director, Matthew Soloman for his participation in running the 10kms category – it was no easy feat!

Following an early start to the day, over 1,000 participants were pumped and ready to say, “Love your feet, adios diabetes”. There were 3 categories; 21kms, 10kms and 3kms respectively. The atmosphere surrounding the event even had a hint of Mexicana feel to it.  

Everyone who participated had a clear aim in mind – giving back to the less fortunate. Through generous public donations and corporate sponsorship – like what Ben Line Agencies Malaysia had contributed through our Sports Club – SJMC managed to raise funds to purchase 100 wheelchairs for the needy throughout Malaysia. Well done indeed, SJMC!

The early morning downpour did not deter the runners – each pressing on with every pelt of rain and the cold winds hitting them. The uphill and rough terrain added on to the challenge. However, each runner had persevered and pressed on to finish the run. Each victorious in their own right because of their charitable spirit!

We look forward to our next charity event and once again, a great effort to all staff from Ben Line Agencies Malaysia who participated!