Optimarin aligns structure to meet growth demands
Based on planned IMO compliance deadlines, over 50,000 merchant ships will need to install certified BWT systems by 2016 or 2017; that’s about 10,000 ships per year for five or so years after ratification. Optimarin, a world leader of ballast water treatment systems, is setting its sights on retrofits and newbuilds that represent great opportunity for future business growth.
Optimarin announced global expansion of its company after a period of significant activity, securing BWT system contract wins with a number of major ship owners to be delivered over the next few years.
Optimarin has increased the number of staff by 100%, from 10 to 21 during 1Q 2011 and strongly believes this number could double within 24 months time.
“The BWT market has exploded and we have landed large contracts with companies like Gulf Offshore, K-Line, Siem Offshore, Farstad, Eidesvik, STX, REM and Grieg. In addition, we have been contacted by and are negotiating with a number of major global players,” says Optimarin CEO, Paal Sanner.
With a current order book of 75 vessels representing 75 BWT systems, Optimarin has secured a major slice of the Norwegian offshore BWT market. It’s main business aim iis to become the leading provider of ballast water treatment systems to the retrofit and newbuild markets.
“We are a growing global BWT organisation. The integration of new skilled staff will increase the value we provide to ship owners and yards, and will strengthen our capabilities to further support the evolving BWT needs of our shipping and offshore customer base,” says Sanner.
Optimarin has signed exclusive worldwide distribution deals with over 20 agents and intends to further increase its global network of authorised distributors to make sure customers have easy access to the BWT systems they need‚ wherever they are located.
“Our most recent agency appointments were in Holland and Germany. As the business continues to grow, we will increase the number of agents and strengthen our consulting, engineering, and technical services with additional offices throughout the world,” said Sanner.
Optimarin recently opened a branch office in Hong Kong. The office opening is part of its geographic expansion initiative to increase its presence in strategic maritime hubs throughout the world.
With four Optimarin branches, Optimarin is actively strengthening its ability to provide high-value BWT solutions to clients and partners in key shipping and shipbuilding nations. Offices in New York and Newcastle, in addition to Norway, provide a valuable source of growth and skills for the company.
“Optimarin is global and growing. Our BWT brand is becoming well known amongst ship owners and shipyards from Korea and Japan to Holland, China and Norway,” says Sanner.
Furthermore, Optimarin announces an enhanced five-year strategy with a focus on profitability, streamlined technology and further expansion. The company will leverage its local expertise to allow greater knowledge sharing and cross selling internationally across the business. At the core of the strategy is the principle of sustainability by BWT design which is a leading proposition for Optimarin’s customers.
“We have a strategic business plan to tackle significant growth and movement into other green technology. We will continue to expand our R&D initiatives and provide the industry with the most flexible, energy efficient, cost competitive BWT system installation and technology,” says Sanner.
“Few can beat us on the retrofit side of the business. We have very short production and delivery times. These benefits, together with low maintenance costs and lower priced, standard, off the shelf parts, give ship owners tremendous commercial advantages. In the newbuild market, Optimarin is extremely competitive,” says Sanner
Optimarin lands major bulk carrier contract
Optimarin has cemented its good relationship with Grieg Shipping Group with a contract to install its ballast water treatment systems onboard 10 open-hatch conventional crane general cargo carriers currently under construction at Hyundai Mipo Dockyard in Korea.
Grieg evaluated the system and decided to order several systems based on Optimarin’s extensive operational experience in ballast water treatment.
“Grieg is a good example of a responsible shipowner acting now. We have been in dialogue with Grieg for several years and secured the right BWT system for their extensive new building program at Hyundai Mipo. And no doubt at the right time considering a rapidly approaching BWT bottleneck in the future,” says Tor Kleppa, sales development manager, Optimarin.
Each of the 10 cargo carriers of 48,700dwt will house a 1200m3 Optimarin Ballast System. The system adjusts power consumption according to UV intensity and the filters feature automatic back flushing and are self-cleaning.
“Optimarin’s technology is suitable for any size of vessel. Grieg is just one of the many vessel sizes and large-scale contracts that we have secured in the past four months,” says Kleppa.
The first two systems will be delivered to Hyundai Mipo Dockyard in October 2011 and the vessels are scheduled to sail from Hyundai in August 2012.
Tested, type-approved and proven equipment were key variables to winning the contract. And Grieg was adamant about choosing a system that would ensure there was no risk of corrosion on the ballast tanks.
“Grieg wanted a very environmental, cost-efficient, modular and simple system. Backed by 10 years of R&D and optimising our BWT technology, we supplied just that,” says Kleppa.
He said: “Optimarin solutions are flexible, easy to maintain, equipped with reliable standard parts and offer one of the smallest footprints available. These are clear competitive cost advantages.”
The vessels will be marketed under the Grieg Star Shipping brand, which has entered into short and long-term contracts with large international cargo owners.
Optimarin grips firmly on offshore market with major contracts
Oslo, Norway, May 25,2011: Optimarin has signed a number of high profile contracts to install its ballast water treatment systems onboard offshore vessels owned and operated by some of the major players in the offshore industry.
Farstad Shipping, Eidesvik Offshore, Siem Offshore and STX have all chosen Optimarin’s leading ballast water treatment (BWT) systems for their offshore vessels.
“These shipowners and shipbuilders have evaluated the various ballast water treatment systems that are available on the market and chose Optimarin for its impressive operational results and installation flexibility,” says Paal Sanner, CEO of Optimarin.
Siem Offshore and Kleven Verft picked Optimarin to install BWT onboard the final two vessels in a series of 10 newbuilds. As these two vessels were keel laid after 2008 Siem Offshore was keen to have an effective BWT system installed to meet the International Maritime Organization (IMO) ballast water regulations, which stipulates that these vessels must have a BWT system installed.
The last vessel in the series will be delivered from the yard in April 2011. Tor Øystein Kleppa, sales development manager at Optimarin, says: “The vessels did not have an area reserved for ballast water treatment systems, but the yard was able to place the system components in different areas of the vessel thanks to system flexibility in design and its modular construction. This flexibility has not gone unnoticed by the shipowners and yards.”
Another leading name in the offshore industry – STX OSV – has signed contracts with Optimarin for numerous orders at various yards within Norway. Additionally, STX Trading has signed contracts with Optimarin for partner yards in Vietnam and India.
The orders are for BWT systems onboard platform supply vessels (PSV) and anchor handling tug supply vessels (AHTS). The first of the vessels was built at STX Brevik and delivered in the third quarter of 2010 for K-Line Offshore. Not to mention, Farstad Shipping and Eidesvik Offshore have opted for Optimarin’s BWT onboard their latest newbuilds. Proof that the reputation of Optimarin’s design results in real orders.
Kleppa says: “There is no doubt that the recent offshore orders fit well with Optimarin’s business strategy. It makes a lot of sense to have a strong presence in the global offshore market, as it is a market that is on the move. The beauty of Optimarin’s system is that it fits well on various types of offshore vessels – it does not require large amounts of space in which it has to be installed.”
Bridging the Gulf
Optimarin has entered into a frame agreement with Gulf Offshore Norge, the Norwegian subsidiary of GulfMark Offshore. This agreement covers the delivery of ballast water treatment systems for GulfMark vessels – no mean feat by any account.
Optimarin installed its first retrofit system in a GulfMark vessel in September 2009.
GulfMark had the system operating for one year and was satisfied with how the system performed so it decided to enter a frame agreement to roll out the system to other vessels in the fleet.
The frame agreement covers all vessels operated by GulfMark and its subsidiaries and to date GulfMark has confirmed orders for 6 vessels.
The equipment supplied by Optimarin for GulfMark is its leading ballast water technology in capacities of 150m3/h up to 250m3/h– depending on the vessel size and operational requirement.
GulfMark understands that current IMO regulations state that vessels constructed before 2009 with a ballast water capacity of between 1500m3 and 5000m3 must start to meet the ballast water performance standard from 2014 at the latest.
It is important for shipowners to ensure that all retrofit installations are completed within 2018-2019 at the absolute latest. Optimarin expects that all retrofit installations in this frame agreement will be completed by 2016. Optimarin’s long experience and expertise at installing ballast water technology will enable it to meet this challenging deadline.
Optimarin offers true flexibility with its ballast water treatment system installations. As Optimarin can install its systems when vessels are docked, in port or during voyage, the timescale for completing the installation rests with the operator’s requirements.
Many offshore vessels have space limitations when it comes to fitting a large fixed system. Optimarin is different as it can place components in a different part of the vessel.
For operators looking for a system that offers both flexibility and simplicity Optimarin is the best fit.
Optimarin Achieves ISO 9001:2008 Certification
Optimarin has received ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management certification by the Technology Institute (Teknologisk Institutt) of Norway.
ISO 9001 is the world’s most established quality framework and sets the standard for quality management systems, clearly defining processes for delivering first class products and services to customers.
The certification verifies key routines, quality products and logistics in the entire scope of Optimarin’s production of its globally-recognized Ballast Water Treatment system.
“We have worked very hard to get QA in line and now we have received the ISO stamp of approval. We pride ourselves on producing quality products and now this is formally recognised,” says Paal Sanner, chief executive officer, Optimarin.
The ISO 9001:2008 standard is a set of quality practices that ensures the use of effective processes that are consistently monitored and continually improved.
“The certification process, performed by a third-party auditor, required Optimarin to implement an ISO-compliant quality management system that established a systematic approach to managing our BWT processes,” says Sanner.
Optimarin expects its ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) program to be operational in four weeks time. ERP integrates internal and external management information across Optimarin, embracing finance/accounting, production, sales and service, etc.
“We are clearly ready to facilitate the flow of information between all business functions inside the boundaries of the organization and manage the connections to outside stakeholders,” says Sanner.
“Obtaining ISO certification demonstrates Optimarin’s commitment to deliver high level of service to the merchant marine and offshore shipping industries today and in the future.”