"Dubai is anything but ordinary", says Aayush when we talk to him over the phone in his new hometown. Aayush and his wife arrived here a few months ago. They recently moved into their new apartment and have just unpacked the last of the moving boxes. "You might think that the more often you move, the better you get at it, but that’s not the case", says Aayush.
Experience of moving is something he and his wife certainly have; most recently from Boston where he completed the Sloan Fellows Program, an MBA for mid-career managers, at MIT’s Sloan School of Management. At the same time, his wife studied the history and theory of art at Harvard University. Aayush says that the year was one of the best years of their lives. Whilst studying, he was on leave from his job at Stena where he last worked at Stena International Freight, based in Gothenburg.
Aayush grew up in India and at the age of 17 he signed on as a cadet. His first job was with a family-owned Norwegian tanker company operating mainly in the North Sea. Five years later, he was offered a job at Stena and in 2004 he began working as a third officer on one of Stena’s VLCCs, under Northern Marine Management, Glasgow. He continued sailing aboard various Stena ships, till he became a Master Mariner in 2009. He then went to London, to pursue an MSc in Shipping Finance from Cass Business School, following which he joined Stena Bulk in commercial operations at its office in Gothenburg. He also spent some time in Houston when Stena Weco was being set up. Whilst at Stena Weco, he moved to the office in Singapore where he stayed for two years before returning to Gothenburg to join the newly formed Stena International Freight.
Aayush is very happy and grateful for the broad international experience he has acquired. It has been enriching on both a personal and a professional level and he hopes that by and large the company has also benefited. "I’m a good example of it being possible to get to where you want to go. By working in several countries and in different positions, I’ve become good at taking on challenges much more quickly. That gives you enormous self-confidence and you realise that it doesn’t need to be that complicated", Aayush continues.
"Without the support of one’s loved ones, this sort of life would not be possible", says Aayush, who has been with his wife Poonam, for 16 years now. Their new home city of Dubai is the complete opposite to Gothenburg; it’s a glitzy blend of Asian, Middle Eastern and European influences. Dubai is a very active city where there is always a lot going on as well. "It’s the most cosmopolitan place we’ve ever lived in. Here, everybody is from somewhere else and nobody feels left out", Aayush notes. In his spare time, he likes to swim and play squash as well as spending time on emerging technology, a great interest of his.
The new office has now been inaugurated and with the temperature dropping to more pleasant levels, the city’s inhabitants are once again beginning to enjoy the outdoor cafés and restaurants. When Aayush first arrived in Dubai early last autumn, the temperature was 50° C; so hot that nobody spent any time outside. Now, he is looking forward to establishing Stena’s tanker business in Dubai and taking on new challenges for the group in the region.