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Top 5 lifetime achievement 2018

Leaders of the maritime industry are chosen for their dedication, ambition and excellence. Our list is compiled of winners from the Lloyd's List Awards series, first launched in London 20 years ago. They appear in reverse order of event: Global Awards in London; Greek Awards in Athens; South Asia, Middle East and Africa Awards in Dubai; Asia Pacific Awards in Singapore, and Americas Awards in Houston

As part of our annual Lloyd's List Top 100 most influential people in shipping series we recognise individuals for their outstanding contribution to the industry

01 / Prof Costas Grammenos, CASS Business School

PROFESSOR Costas Grammenos deserves recognition for 40 years of educating, mentoring and inspiring multiple generations of shipping executives.

In 2007, CASS Business School re-named their International Centre the ‘Costas Grammenos Centre for Shipping, Trade and Finance’ and from 1983 to the present day, countless students have become leading figures in the industry.

Professor Grammenos has been bestowed with multiple accolades as a testament to his contribution, including an OBE in 1994 for his international shipping role, CBE in 2008 for ‘services to teaching and research’ and the 2009 Lloyd’s List ‘Achievement in Education’.

With past positions held on multiple company boards, his influence is exerted across a wide breadth of maritime spaces, such as Onassis Public Benefit Foundation and the Fellow of Chartered Institute of Bankers.

In 2018, Professor Grammenos was appointed to the UK government maritime policy team to ensure the UK remains ‘at the forefront of global shipping’, showcasing his value remains relevant today.


Simeon P. Palios, director, chief executive and chairman, Diana Shipping Inc02 / Simeon P. Palios, director, chief executive and chairman, Diana Shipping Inc

SIMEON Palios rose through the ranks to chief executive and chairman for Diana Shipping in 2005, after starting as managing director of Diana Shipping Agencies in 1972. Diana Shipping is an Athens-based company, with more than 50 dry bulk vessels from panama to newcastlemax.

His maritime contribution includes involvement in leading classification societies and is a board member for UK Freight Demurrage and Defense Association Ltd.

With expansive experience in the industry, Mr Palios’ career path includes being an ensign in the Greek Navy, a naval architect and marine engineer after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in marine engineering from Durham University. These diverse roles have demonstrated expertise across technical and operational issues.

Despite financial issues in the first quarter 2018, Mr Palios is ‘optimistic’ about the future after second-quarter results showed improvement.


Capt Jitendra Misra, managing director, Emarat Maritime03 / Capt Jitendra Misra, managing director, Emarat Maritime

CAPTAIN Jitendra Misra has progressed from deck cadet for India Steamship Co in 1971, to managing director of Emarat Maritime, a prestigious shipping company with a focus on dry bulk and energy markets. In 1990, he relocated to Dubai, where seven years of hard work later landed him the position he holds today.

Capt Misra is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers, founding chairman of the Institute’s United Arab Emirates branch, as well as fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.

His involvement with BIMCO was initiated in 2009 and in 2015, he was elected chairman of the marine committee and member of the executive committee. As an innovative individual, Capt Misra is partially responsible for the design of the ultramax bulk carrier of 60,341 dwt, which won two shipping awards in 2010.

Captain Misra received Lloyd’s List ‘Outstanding Achievement Award’ in 2018.


Frank Tsao, founder and chairman, IMC04 / Frank Tsao, founder and chairman, IMC

FRANK Tsao founded IMC in 1966 after he moved from China to Hong Kong during the Second World War. With a BA degree in economics from St John’s University and business acumen throughout his family history, Dr Tsao followed in their entrepreneurial footsteps.

IMC started as an owner and operator of cargo vessels but has since diversified into a supply chain and logistics provider. Dr Tsao has guided the company through economic downturn, privatisation and China’s economic growth, and now sits as chairman, while his son took the reins as chief executive.

Career highlights include the King of Malaysia titling him "Tan Sri" in to commemorate his economic achievements for Malaysia in 1973.

Dr Tsao serves numerous boards; honorary chairman of Shanghai-Hong Kong International Maritime R&D and Communication Centre; chairman of the board of the centre for maritime studies, NUS; honorary chairman of Tsao Foundation; chairman of Suntec Investment Pte.


Dr James Chao, chairman, Foremost Group05 / Dr James Chao, chairman, Foremost Group

DR JAMES Chao is honorary chairman of New-York based Foremost Group, a dry cargo shipping company he founded in 1964.

His commitment to shipping began early on, with navigation studies in China followed by becoming a captain at 29. Foremost Group has an unprecedented reputation, known for using environmentally friendly technology within its fleet.

Recognition for Dr Chao includes being nominated into the International Maritime Hall of Fame at the United Nations in 2004 and in 2018, he was awarded an honorary doctorate of public administration by Massachusetts Maritime Academy.

Dr Chao is a philanthropist and advocate for education being pivotal for success and has created a James Chao scholarship for maritime studies at Harvard Business School.

He has six daughters, the youngest of which, Angela, is now chief executive and chairman of Foremost Group. Dr Chao recently won the ‘Lloyd’s List Americas 2018 Lifetime Achievement’ award.


The Top 5 lifetime achievers list is compiled of winners from the Lloyd's List Awards series. They appear here in reverse date order of event: Global Awards in London; Greek Awards in Athens; South Asia, Middle East and Africa Awards in Dubai; Asia Pacific Awards in Singapore, and Americas Awards in Houston. For more information on the Lloyd's List Awards series, click here.  

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