Malin Östman

Manager, Project Development, Growth and Development, Wärtsilä Energy Business


6 years at Wärtsilä

Originally from Finland


Together towards the sustainable future

Working in an industry delivering tangible goods and services and important infrastructure projects was what drew Malin Östman to Wärtsilä when she was considering her future career. After a few years in management consulting she wanted to work on longer-term projects, and with this in mind she applied for a financial analyst position at Wärtsilä Energy Business in the Wärtsilä Development and Financial Services team (WDFS). She knew it was the right position for her when she got the possibility to discuss with the team during the interview stage. “It was the most enjoyable and interesting interview that I’ve ever had,” Malin says.

Following the Financial analyst role, Malin has been working in the Project Development function on projects at different stages: from origination to financial close. “One of the best things about my journey at Wärtsilä has been the chance to work with new technologies and strategic initiatives. I started working on Engine-Solar PV Hybrids in 2014, and I was part of the working group for planning Wärtsilä’s entry to the solar market”, Malin says.

Besides working on engine projects, she has worked as a developer on a standalone solar PV project and on the Hamina LNG terminal project which achieved financial close in 2018. Now she is focusing on project development for Energy Storage and Hybrids in Asia. “It's an amazing learning curve to work on so many different technologies and different types of power projects. Over the years I have also worked with many of our geographic areas. It is great to work with people from different parts of the organisation, “ she continues.

Malin has been actively involved in both innovation and future strategy projects. “The concept of hybrid plants has had a big impact on my career. Working on those early hybrid projects were good learning opportunities for me, and today I spend most of my time working with hybrids”. The complementary nature of engines, renewable energy, and energy storage has also become an integral part of the Energy Business vision, value proposition and strategy.

Many interesting days and events have taken place during Malin’s global career path. Among the most memorable, according to her, are the internal Energy Up events held in 2017 and 2018. “It was such a great opportunity to meet and (re)connect with so many colleagues, and to experience the fantastic atmosphere, optimism, energy and friendliness created by all Wärtsilians who were there. It was a truly special experience!” she describes the warm atmosphere of the events. Solving the world’s sustainability challenges is engaging for Wärtsilians on a personal level too, and it adds meaning to our work.

Malin thinks she definitely made the right choice during those first interviews at Wärtsilä, as she reflects: “Wärtsilä offers many development and learning opportunities; the atmosphere is open and the work is rewarding. You get a lot of responsibility which empowers you. In addition to that you are free to contribute, grow and learn outside of your immediate responsibilities. An independent approach to work and a can-do attitude is appreciated. Colleagues create a great supportive environment and many Wärtsilians also end up forming long-term friendships.”

Positive attitude and energy

“I have an open and positive mindset and I like to see opportunities instead of threats. This can be very important in my job as I work with high-risk projects with a long lead time. With these projects it would be easy to see why something wouldn’t work, or what could possibly go wrong. But if you do that too much, you lose the drive and energy to push these projects forward. However you need to balance optimism with analytical skills and critical thinking, as resources are limited we must all invest our time wisely, prioritizing the most important things, “ Malin explains.

In Malin’s view we should grow to provide more integrated services utilising a value-selling approach. “The need for environmental sustainability and the energy transition will change our industry and the world, and we need to keep ahead of the curve to be successful. I'm looking forward to this ride together with Wärtsilä. Energy and Marine are among the most interesting industries in the world at the moment and I think Wärtsilä is a very exciting company to work for. The challenges ahead open up many opportunities for growth, professionally and personally,” she says.

” What keeps me energised is the feeling that I can move things forward, as well as work with great colleagues. I also get a lot of energy from my hobbies during my free time: I enjoy travelling and exploring the world, scuba diving, good food, relaxing in nature and reading books. I am originally from Finland and moved to Singapore about a year ago, so I spend most of my free time with my husband and with friends and colleagues here in Singapore, making the most of my new hometown.”

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