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Published: 12 July 2017      

Change at the top for Tideworks

After leading Tideworks Technology since its creation in 1998 President Michael Schwank is retiring this August.

Michael Schwank leaves Tideworks as one of the only TOS suppliers to successfully build a commercial business from origins as the in-house IT department of a terminal operator. 

Tideworks Technology is part of the Carrix Group, which includes the terminal operator SSA Marine and its subsidiaries. When Tideworks was created in the 1990s a number of terminal operators were looking to commercialize and/or spin off their in-house TOS developments into a commercial business. The list includes Hessenatie, PSA Singapore, TSI in Vancouver and Maher Terminals.

Developing and supporting a commercially viable off-the-shelf TOS for the wider market, however, proved to be a lot more difficult and resource intensive than building an in-house system for a single operator. Most of TOS applications with in-house origins have either fallen by the wayside or reverted to pure in-house developments as companies withdrew from the market or were subject to consolidation.

Tideworks, however, has stayed the course and grown considerably, including a successful expansion into the US intermodal rail market. Tideworks noted that as one of the original management leaders of Tideworks, Schwank advocated for the resourcing that eventually led to the creation of the Tideworks brand as a legal entity within the Carrix family of products and service solutions. Its software is now used at more than 100 facilities globally, and the company has proven successful at leveraging the operating experience of both sister companies, including SSA Marine, and external clients into its commercial products. 

Knud Stubkjaer, CEO of Carrix, Inc., the parent company of SSA Marine, Tideworks Technology and Rail Management Services paid tribute to Schwank’s leadership and 35 years within the Carrix group. “Michael’s steadfast guidance over the years has been instrumental in shaping Tideworks to be the force for intelligent technology and operations efficiency. He departs Tideworks with a great legacy for us to cultivate and continue to develop as the company continues to grow.”

Schwank will be followed by Thomas J. (T.J.) Rucker, who will relocate to Seattle to assume the role of president effective Sept. 1, 2017. Rucker is currently vice president of operations at Manzanillo International Terminal (MIT), one of the largest container terminals in Latin America, where he is responsible for managing liner customer relationships, strategic planning and ensuring terminal productivity and KPI performance.

“I am confident that T.J. will maintain Tideworks’ long-held values, while taking the organization to new heights in a future where the measurement of success may constantly change while our integrity and level of service remain steadfast,” said Schwank. “It has been my great honour to serve an organization that is deeply committed to providing the highest quality service and product excellence, while being unafraid to take bold positions to continually move us, our partners and our industry forward.”

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