Shipping magnate John Angelicoussis passed away in Athens on Saturday at the age of 73. He was hospitalized on March 20 after a serious heart attack and did not recover. According to a statement from his firm, he died in his sleep with family members by his side.

“The world [shipping industry] has lost one of its protagonists and the Greek navy is mourning its top captain,” said Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in a statement. “John Angelicoussis honored the maritime tradition and our homeland in every way: he conquered the oceans, raised the blue and white [Greek flag] on his ships, moved the headquarters of his activities to Greece and enhanced its maritime education. And, when needed, as during the recent pandemic, he helped fight for health with silent donations. Sailor and Greek until the end.”

“John Angelicoussis was not just the greatest Greek shipowner. He was a pioneer at all levels,” said Greek Deputy Foreign Minister Miltiadis Varvitsiotis. “His contribution to naval training was remarkable, because without the probationary officers on ships it would be difficult to have thousands of Greek officers on ships today.”

“Today we lost a man of our own, a dear friend, a patriot,” said President of the Union of Greek Shipowners Theodore Veniamis. “John Angelicoussis was a worthy follower of the traditions of the Greek shipping family, and grew up in an intensely international competitive environment, always keeping high flag of the homeland and embracing Greek sailors and the Greek [fleet]. He was internationally recognized for his successful business decisions and achievements.”

John Angelicoussis joined his family’s shipping company in 1973, and after taking the helm, he built it into one of the largest private shipowning firms in the world – and the largest in Greece. In 2003, his firm became the first in Greece to buy and operate tonnage in the LNG carrier sector, opening a new field of play for Greek shipping.

Today, the Angelicoussis Shipping Group owns 139 vessels in the dry bulk, LNG and liquid bulk sectors, with a total deadweight of about 23 million tonnes. The overwhelming majority fly the Greek flag, and the firm’s vessels account for about 40 percent of the Greek registry’s entire tonnage. The firm employs about 7,500 people across all of its global subsidiaries. 

John Angelicoussis is succeeded by his daughter Maria Angelicoussis, who took over as acting CEO on March 20 when he was hospitalized. 

Source: The Maritime Executive