Mohammad Sharaf

DP World today announced the retirement of its group chief executive Mohammed Sharaf, following a 23-year career with the company, including 11 years in his current post.

The company said it had begun the search for a successor, and that chairman Sultan bin Sulayem would take over Mr Sharaf’s role until the right candidate had been identified.

Mr Sharaf said today: “I would like to thank His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister, vice president of the UAE and ruler of Dubai, Sultan bin Sulayem, chairman of DP World and the DP World group for giving me the opportunity to be part of the success story of DP World. It has been a very exciting journey and I am confident that the team will continue taking DP World to even greater heights.”

Sultan Sulayem added: “I would like to thank Mohammed for his years of dedication and service to the Group. He has been an invaluable part of the success we have achieved and I wish him well for his retirement.”

A key plank in the government of Dubai’s strategy to diversify away a hydrocarbon-based economy, the transformation of DP World from a single port-operating company in Dubai to joining the select group of major international terminal operators that dominate the port industry has been one of the most compelling narratives of container shipping’s chapter in the history of globalisation, and Mr Sharaf was at the heart of that expansion, as part of a handful of executives developing the company’s strategy – it was clear to anyone acquainted with Sultan Sulayem that he one of his most trusted advisors.

Mr Sharaf began his career working at New York’s Howland Hook terminal before joining Dubai Ports Authority in 1993.

In 2003, he became managing director of its fledgling international operations and was named chief executive in 2005 after the international and domestic arms of the business were integrated to become DP World.

He subsequently managed the acquisitions of firstly CSX World Terminals in 2005, and then of the P&O Group the following year, steering the company through what was an exceptionally difficult time due to the politically sensitive nature of the purchase in the United States.


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