The Swedish Club Maintains Zero Per Cent General Increase

For the fourth year in succession The Swedish Club has announced a zero per cent general increase for the forthcoming P&I year.

The decision was made by the Club’s board in consideration of the general market view that premiums are not in proportion with expected claims outcome.

Lars Rhodin, Managing Director of The Swedish Club says: “In a number of shipping sectors the market remains weak and we have a commitment to support members at this crucial point. Read more

Indian Register of Shipping wins two prestigious awards at separate ceremonies

Leading classification society Indian Register of Shipping (IRClass), won ‘Classification Society of the Year’ award at the Samudra Manthan Awards ceremony on 5 December, and on another occasion, the ‘Indywood Excellence Award for Professional Achievement – Class Compliance’ was bestowed upon Mr. Suresh Sinha, Managing Director of IRClass, recognising his efforts towards the development of the classification society landscape within the maritime sector.

The Indywood Excellence Awards 2018 (Marine / Offshore / Oil & Gas) were held at HITEX Exhibition Centre in Hyderabad on 2nd December, and this year’s Samudra Manthan Awards took place on 5th December at Sahara Star in Mumbai, India.

This marks the second occasion the classification society has been named the classification society of the year – where this year, the criterion for selection included digitalisation initiatives, cyber security, maritime research and industry projects.

Mr. Sinha said: “I am humbled to be bestowed with the Indywood Excellence Award, but the real winner is the team of committed and dedicated employees of IRClass globally; who have been instrumental in expanding the classification society within the marine and oil & gas sectors. I would like to congratulate each one of them for the hard work.”

He added: “This validates the work we have been doing for our valued clients and spurs us to further raise our service standards and to help the marine as well as oil & gas industries to cope with the new dynamics of the digital ecosystem in a changing shipping landscape.”

Tindall Riley to sell its Carina Fixed P&I Product to The MECO Group

Following a strategic review of its operations, Tindall Riley (TR) has agreed to sell Carina, its fixed premium P&I Managing General Agent (MGA), to The MECO Group for an undisclosed sum. Set up by TR in 2012, Carina is a successful and well managed specialised fixed premium P&I provider.

The terms of sale are agreed, but the transfer will only complete once all the regulatory and underwriting approvals have been received, which is scheduled before the end of 2018.

The focus of the parties has been on ensuring a seamless transfer, based on a ‘business as usual’ approach, under which the current Carina team will transfer across to MECO and continue to run Carina as part of the MECO Group. They will continue to offer clients the same first-class service and transactional efficiency in their new home.

From the date of transfer, Carina will become a MECO brand and MECO will assume TR’s role as the MGA that owns and operates Carina. MECO will take over all TR’s responsibilities as Managers of Carina and the existing Carina team will relocate to MECO’s London office. With effect from the date of transfer, MECO will take sole responsibility for current policies and all prior years.

The underlying security of Carina, as a Lloyd’s based product, will remain unchanged.

Commenting on the transaction Simon Scriven, Chairman of TR said:

“Carina has performed well in a challenging cycle, the decision to sell was not an easy one, but we concluded that despite its success, operating Carina as an MGA was not in-line with our key strategic objectives as one of the leading mutual management operations. We chose MECO Group as the new home for the Carina team because it is the oldest and most well-respected marine MGA in London.” 

Christopher Else, CEO of the MECO Group commented as follows:

“The acquisition of Carina represents a big step in the development of the MECO Group. Carina is a strong brand managed by an experienced and professional team that will fit well within the MECO Group. The last few years have been challenging in the marine insurance industry, but all our brands have been profitable during turbulent times and in a fast-changing market, the opportunities for expansion are genuinely exciting. The acquisition of Carina is just one example of how the MECO Group is well placed to grow in the current climate.”

Thome’s Chairman Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Olav Eek Thorstensen, Executive Chairman of the Thome Group, received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Tanker Shipping and Trade’s annual conference held in London on 20-21 November.

Looking back over his 50 years in the maritime industry, Mr Eek Thorstensen recalled the early days of third party ship management and how he realised that Thome could offer more efficient services to owners trading vessels in the Far East. So began Thome’s growth in that sector which continues to this day.

He also paid tribute to his staff recognising that the success of the Thome Group is not down to just one person and that every employee has contributed with dedication and hard work.

Looking to the future he predicted that, within the next 10 years, there would be fundamental changes in the structure of ship owning with an increase in vessels being owned by asset management companies which bodes well for third party ship managers as their expertise will be required to run these fleets.

In conclusion, he stated that he cherishes all his memories of working in such a dynamic industry and thanked the organisers for recognising him in this way.

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KVH Videotel Announces Promotion of Raal Harris to Managing Director

KVH Videotel, a market-leading provider of training films, computer-based training, and eLearning for the maritime industry, announced today that Raal Harris has been named managing director. In his new role, Mr. Harris is responsible for the overall business, including creative production, content and licensing, product development, and sales. Based in KVH Videotel’s London office, Mr. Harris has extensive experience in the commercial maritime industry and is actively involved with numerous seafarer welfare organizations, ship management associations, and international shipping entities.

Previously, Mr. Harris held the title of creative content director for KVH Videotel and was responsible for production and development of eLearning materials and digital media strategy. He championed a creative approach to enhance product interactivity and user experience and spearheaded various projects to increase Videotel’s web presence and to deliver training online and on mobile devices.

Mr. Harris’s background includes university lectureships in interaction design, information product design, and computer games design, which gave him invaluable experience in structuring and designing learning material and evaluating learner performance.

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KVH Announces Two Key Leadership Positions for the Global Company

The promotions leverage business and maritime industry experience within the tech innovation company

MIDDLETOWN, RI – November 15, 2018 – KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI), a leader in global mobile connectivity and inertial navigation solutions, today announced that Brent Bruun has expanded his responsibilities as chief operating officer, and Mark Woodhead has been named executive vice president of mobile connectivity. The promotions leverage the business and maritime industry experience of the two leaders.

In his role as chief operating officer, Mr. Bruun will now spearhead corporate business development; oversee all operational and financial aspects of KVH’s mobile connectivity and inertial navigation businesses; lead financial planning and analysis; foster investor relations; and work toward organizational excellence across the global company.
Mr. Bruun joined KVH in early 2008 and served as executive vice president of the mobile broadband group, the company’s largest business unit. Prior to joining KVH, Mr. Bruun was senior vice president with satellite operator SES Americom, and gained his strong corporate financial background from positions held with GE Capital and KPMG earlier in his career.

“I look forward to accelerating growth for KVH as we continue to strengthen our leadership market share with our mobile connectivity products and services, particularly in maritime VSAT, and increase the demand for our inertial solutions in the fast growing autonomous markets,” says Mr. Bruun, who is based in KVH’s global headquarters in Middletown, Rhode Island.

In Mr. Woodhead’s new role as executive vice president of mobile connectivity, he takes on leadership for EMEA, Asia, and Americas commercial sales; global leisure sales; KVH VideotelTM and KVH Media Group; global sales operations; and product line management. Mr. Woodhead previously served as KVH’s senior vice president, EMEA, overseeing mobile connectivity sales activities in the region and also overseeing KVH Videotel on a global basis. Mr. Woodhead has a strong background in sales and the commercial maritime industry, having focused on these areas for more than 20 years; he is based in KVH’s Leeds, U.K., office.

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ICS Chairman Calls for Comprehensive Revision of STCW Seafarer Training Regime

Speaking in Manila, the Chairman of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), Esben Poulsson, has called for a comprehensive revision of the IMO STCW Convention which governs global standards for the training and certification of around two million merchant seafarers.

STCW was reviewed in 2010 with the adoption of the ‘Manila amendments’ but the previous major overhaul of the STCW regime was last undertaken by IMO Member States over 25 years ago.

Mr Poulsson said “It’s now commonplace for employers to routinely provide additional training and assessments prior to the deployment of many officers holding STCW certification which raises questions as to whether the Convention as currently drafted is still fit for purpose in the 21st Century.” Read more

Indian Register of Shipping plays central role at INMARCO

The Indian Register of Shipping (IRClass) continues to play a central role at the International Maritime Conference and Exhibition (INMARCO) which is held every four years.

Organised by the Institute of Marine Engineers (India), this year’s INMARCO will see a packed programme of technical discussions and panel debates covering a wide spectrum of topics including maritime safety, environment, technology and security to oceanography and underwater technology.

A Platinum sponsor, IRClass will be providing three expert speakers who will be giving talks on the following areas:

The key to successful maritime cyber risk assessment by Mr. R. Srinivas, (Principal Surveyor)

Best practise in Ballast Water Management by Mr. Devrup Kabi, (Principal Surveyor)

Understanding hybrid power systems by Mr. S. Mutharasu, (Senior Surveyor).

The Conference is being organised from 1st to 3rd November 2018 at the LaLiT hotel in Mumbai and will be graced by Ministry of Shipping and maritime administration officials as well as senior industry representatives from across the maritime spectrum globally. Further information can be found on the INMARCO 2018 website.

“IRClass has always been a huge supporter of INMARCO and we’re proud to be providing the conference with experts from differing fields within the maritime sector giving talks on relevant industry issues” said Mr. Arun Sharma, Executive Chairman.

Mr. Vijay Arora, Joint Managing Director of IRClass added: “The conference and exhibition are well-attended, and the panel debates are always very interesting and stimulating, challenging the industry norms.”

KVH Introduces World’s Fastest, Lightest, Ultra-compact Ku-band Marine VSAT Antenna

The TracPhone V3-HTS is a breakthrough antenna for providing connectivity at sea, with faster data speeds than larger marine satellite antennas

MIDDLETOWN, RI – Oct. 31, 2018 – KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI), today unveils the TracPhone® V3-HTS, the world’s fastest, lightest, ultra-compact Ku-band marine VSAT antenna, at the Fort Lauderdale (FL) International Boat Show. Measuring just 37 cm (14.5 inches) diameter and weighing 11 kg (25 lbs.), the TracPhone V3-HTS is smaller in physical size than any other Ku-band marine satellite communications antenna on the market and is designed to provide faster data speeds (5 Mbps download/2 Mbps upload) than larger marine satellite antennas.

The TracPhone V3-HTS’s fast data speeds, combined with its diminutive size, make Internet connectivity and HD-quality streaming available aboard smaller powerboats and sailboats along with commercial vessels, such as workboats and offshore fishing boats, that do not have room for a larger satellite communications antenna.

KVH designed and engineered the TracPhone V3-HTS specifically for KVH’s mini-VSAT Broadbandsm HTS network. This advanced maritime network offers unmatched speed and coverage using new next-generation high-throughput satellites (HTS) from Intelsat’s global network with additional satellite capacity from SKY Perfect JSAT, all of which is fully integrated under the IntelsatOne Flex for Maritime platform. KVH is the maritime VSAT market share leader by fielded units, according to an independent industry report by Euroconsult.

“KVH’s HTS network changes the game for communications on boats,” says Todd Tally, general manager of Atlantic Marine Electronics, a leading marine systems installer based in Fort Lauderdale. “Incredibly fast, robust, and reliable, this service and the TracPhone HTS antennas allow our customers to enjoy Internet connections, streaming movies and TV, voice calls, video chats, and more.”

The TracPhone V3-HTS is the second HTS antenna design from KVH, which introduced the 60 cm diameter Ku-band TracPhone V7-HTS last year. During the development of both antennas, KVH worked closely with satellite operator Intelsat, which recently upgraded its IntelsatOne Flex platform to support smaller antennas, in anticipation of the release of KVH’s 37 cm terminal. IntelsatOne Flex is a managed service that offers multi-layered global coverage by leveraging Intelsat EpicNG high-throughput satellites (HTS) and select wide beams. The TracPhone V3-HTS is manufactured by KVH at its headquarters in Middletown, Rhode Island.

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Solis Marine Consultants Appoints Former Braemar Salvage Association MD

London-based Solis Marine Consultant has announced the appointment of Nigel Clark to its senior management team.

Nigel Clark, who until recently was Managing Director of Braemar Salvage Association, will assist the Solis management team with the preparation and implementation of a strategic plan for the further expansion of the Group. He brings to the organisation over 30 years of experience within marine consultancy and within the oil and gas sectors. Apart from previously heading up Braemar Salvage Association, he was also a past Finance Director at the London Marine Group.

Established in 2012, Solis is an independent company providing expert witness and all types of incident investigation services as well as salvage support, SCR attendances and casualty management to the maritime industry.

Welcoming his appointment, John Simpson, Senior Partner at Solis Marine, said: “We are delighted to have Nigel join us to strengthen the management team as we continue with our plans to grow Solis Marine and prepare for the next phase of our development. Nigel’s advice and guidance, based on his experience and knowledge of the industry, will be invaluable and we look forward to working with him.”

On his new position Mr Clark responded: “Solis has built an excellent reputation within the industry, especially with regard to its salvage and wreck removal management services and for its expert witness work. It has some exciting ideas for further growth and I look forward to helping the company achieve its goals.”

Solis Marine has offices in London, Singapore and Shanghai and has plans to open further offices in strategic locations in the near future.

Britannia announces a further USD10m Capital Distribution and no General Increase for 2019/20

At its Members’ Representative Committee and Board Meetings on 16 October in Hamburg, Britannia P&I Club announced that for 2019/20 there would be no General Increase to its advance call for P&I Members. In addition, Britannia continues to set its release calls for open policy years at nil.

A further USD10m capital distribution was also announced to P&I mutual Members based on premium for ships on risk at midnight BST 16 October 2018.

Likewise, there will be no General Increase for 2019/20 to its advance call on FD&D. To further support its FD&D Members, from 2019/20 Britannia will cap at USD150,000 individual Members’ one-third contribution towards the cost of any FD&D claim.

“Britannia’s strong capital position means that, since October 2016, we have been able to return USD75m in deferred call waivers and capital distributions to Members, while seeking no General Increase in P&I for the past three years or FD&D for the past five years,” said Nigel Palmer OBE, Chairman of Britannia.

“In the same period, we have enhanced our service offering in Asia whilst establishing a presence in Greece and Denmark. This underlines the Club’s commitment to its Members by continuing to provide the highest quality service.”

“Standard & Poor’s have recently reconfirmed Britannia’s strong financial performance and positive capital position with an A (stable) rating. Prudent yet proactive financial management by the Managers has enabled both Members and the Association to benefit from positive returns” said Jo Rodgers, CFO of Tindall Riley (Britannia) Limited.

 

Seafarers’ Mental Health is Focus of New Training Programme Offered Free to Mariners Worldwide

KVH Videotel introduced a new training package, “Seafarers Mental Health and Wellbeing,” yesterday during the 5th Annual International Shipowning & Shipmanagement Summit in London, and announced that the package will be available free of charge throughout the industry due to the critical importance of the topic. The programme was produced in association with the International Seafarers Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN) and comprises a short video, facilitator notes, and information booklets from ISWAN on mental health issues at sea. To obtain “Seafarers Mental Health and Wellbeing,” please visit videotel.com/seafarerwellbeing.

“Seafarers face unique working conditions which can put them under tremendous stress, with fewer opportunities for relief than they would be likely to find on land,” says Mark Woodhead, KVH senior vice president for EMEA. “This programme not only presents information from industry experts but also lets seafarers themselves tell their own story in interviews and short statements, describing the path to achieving happiness.”

If left unaddressed, seafarer’s stress can result in danger to one’s self by way of lowered morale, increased human error, lifestyle illnesses, decreased productivity, burnout, and mental health issues. “Seafarers Mental Health and Wellbeing” focuses on what seafarers can do to cope with the challenges but also to take advantage of the many opportunities onboard. It underlines the importance of rest, diet, team activities, and maintaining good relationships. Talking to a trusted person onboard ship may help, and there is also help available outside the ship such as the 24/7 multilingual helpline and chat service at SeafarerHelp.org, as well as the work of port-based organisations such as Mission to Seafarers.

ISWAN’s brochures are being distributed as part of this training package, available as downloads from the dedicated KVH Videotel website. In addition, KVH Videotel is providing brief facilitator notes to assist those who will use this programme to run training sessions on vessels.

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ICS Publishes New Edition of Industry Guidance on Garbage Management Plans

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has recently published a new edition of its ‘Guidance for the Preparation and Implementation of Garbage Management Plans as Required by MARPOL Annex V’. This second edition is intended to help shipping companies comply with the latest requirements of the IMO regulation regarding treatment and disposal of garbage from ships.

ICS Deputy Secretary General, Simon Bennett said:

“Following the entry into force of some important amendments to MARPOL Annex V in 2017 and 2018 respectively, it is essential to provide updated advice to shipping companies on the latest requirements for ships to prepare and implement Garbage Management Plans.”

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Britannia Announces Team for Greek Office Opening

Britannia has finalised its Greek office opening plans by announcing the team that has recently taken up residence in Piraeus, Greece.

The office will be tasked with enhancing service delivery to its Greek members and is part of an ongoing expansion of the Club’s regional hub network that will also shortly see the opening of an office in Singapore in addition to the upgrading of its presence in Japan and Hong Kong, as well as the recent opening of an exclusive Correspondent in Copenhagen.

The Greek office, located in the iconic Ionian Building off Akti Miaouli, will be headed by David Harley who recently returned to the London office having established and worked for over 5 years as head of Britannia, Hong Kong.

David has extensive P&I and FD&D claims handling experience and will be assisted by newly appointed Konstantinos Samaritis, who joins from a leading Greek shipowner, having previously worked for both Standard and Skuld Clubs’ Greek operations.

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S&P Global Ratings affirms Britannia’s ratings as ‘A’ (stable)

S&P Global Ratings, the world’s leading independent credit ratings provider, has affirmed its ‘A’ rating on the Britannia P&I Club. It added that the outlook remains stable over the next three years based on its view that the Club’s current capital buffer well exceeds S&P’s ‘AAA’ level requirement.

S&P based its findings on Britannia’s extremely strong level of capitalization and its strong market position in the P&I mutual business, where it has “a track record of quality in its underwriting” and added that the Club “enjoys strong returns”.

The report also notes that with a five-year average net combined ratio (2014-2018) of 88.9%, Britannia’s operating performance has exceeded its long term break-even target and the peer average during this period.

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ICS Announces New Edition of Best Practice Safety Guide for Gas Carrier Operators

The global trade association for ship operators, the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), has announced that it will soon be publishing a new edition of the ICS Tanker Safety Guide (Liquefied Gas).

The ‘ICS Gas Guide’ is the definitive industry best practice guidance for gas carrier operators, and is a carriage requirement under the national regulations of many flag states.

“It is strongly recommended that a copy of the completely revised third edition is carried on board every ship engaged in the transportation of liquefied gas by sea” said ICS Deputy Secretary General, Simon Bennett. Read more

Prevention at Sea Signs Two MOUs

Lloyd’s Register certified marine risk assessor and maritime software developer, Prevention at Sea, has recently signed two Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs).

The first one has been signed with SQLearn, a leading e-Learning company that provides technological training solutions, and the two companies will collaborate on the development of eLearning training programmes using their combined knowledge of maritime know-how and technology.

This will include the use of the latest training techniques, including the use of Virtual Reality (VR), to engage and enthuse the younger generation entering the industry.

The second MOU has been signed with Katradis Marine Ropes, a specialist in mooring systems, procedures and products.

Katradis has many years’ experience in mooring system and line management best practices and tradition, so combining this with Prevention at Sea’s maritime regulatory knowledge and software expertise will benefit ship operators by enabling the detailed compilation of a ship’s mooring system plan to enable the safer management of its mooring procedures.

Both companies will also explore avenues of cooperation by combining technical knowledge and advances in technology to develop innovative products aiming at bettering the industry and enhancing safety.

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KVH Pledges Support to Maritime UK’s Women in Maritime Campaign

KVH, a leading provider of maritime connectivity and content solutions, is delighted to pledge its support for Women in Maritime, an initiative of industry group Maritime UK. The Women in Maritime campaign aims to promote fairness, equality, and inclusion within the maritime sector, bringing together leaders from across the maritime sector to identify practical steps to increase the number of women in maritime, and crucially within senior roles across its shipping, ports, marine, and business services industries.

The Northern launch of the Women in Maritime campaign took place in Liverpool yesterday, with support by several members of KVH’s Liverpool staff, many of whom have actively mentored and encouraged younger women in their workplace and industry for many years. Says Sue Henney, EMEA marketing director for KVH, who has worked in the maritime industry for 25 years: “The maritime sector is a truly international workplace with a wealth of exciting and diverse opportunities.” Ms. Henney’s colleagues in the Liverpool office include five women with a combined total of nearly 70 years’ experience in the maritime industry.

Maritime businesses have initially been asked to sign a Women in Maritime pledge, and KVH officially signed earlier this week. “KVH is committed to building an employment culture that actively supports and celebrates gender diversity, at all levels, throughout our organisation and our industry,” says Elizabeth Jackson, chief marketing officer for KVH. “We are proud to say that we have an extremely diverse team throughout the business and we support the belief that achieving a balanced workforce in the maritime sector will undoubtedly improve culture, behaviour, outcomes, profitability, and productivity.” 

The initiative aims to reach throughout the maritime industry. “The need for fairness, equality, and inclusion is clearer than ever and the maritime sector must embrace diversity because it’s the right thing to do. Equally there is a strong business case for action,” says Sue Teriplowski, OBE, chair of the Women in Maritime taskforce.

 

ICS Launches Free Guidance on Preparing for 2020 Sulphur Cap

To assist shipping companies prepare for implementation of the UN IMO global sulphur cap for ships’ fuel oil, the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has produced – free of charge – some comprehensive guidance on implementation planning, to help ensure compliance across the shipping industry with this regulatory game changer.

The free ICS guidance has been prepared for the vast majority of ships that will comply after 1 January 2020 using fuel oils with a sulphur content of 0.50% m/m or less.

ICS Secretary General, Guy Platten, explained:
“Shipping companies may need to start ordering compliant fuels from as early as the middle of 2019, and they are strongly recommended to commence developing implementation plans as soon as possible.”

Apart from the significant additional cost of compliant fuel, ICS says that implementation of the global cap will be far more complex than for the previous introduction of Emission Control Areas. This is because of the sheer magnitude of the switchover and the much larger quantities and different types of fuel involved, as well as continuing uncertainties about the availability, safety and compatibility of compliant fuels in every port worldwide. Read more

Industry Launches LISW19 with ‘International Trade in a Changing World’ as the Central Theme

LONDON: SEPT 12TH, 2018:  The 12-month countdown to what promises to be the largest and most successful London International Shipping Week so far, has started with the changing face of global trade and the opportunities posed, chosen as the key theme for the week.

LISW19’s overarching theme International Trade in a Changing World will be supported by a series of sub themes: Growing; Innovating; and Partnering. These will provide the backdrop to the flagship LISW19 conference to be held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane on Thursday September 12th, 2019. The themes may also be referred to by LISW19 Supporting Organisations and Sponsors wishing to hold their own events during the week.

Over 20,000 international shipping and maritime decision makers are expected to descend on London between September 9th and 13th, 2019 to attend the fourth London International Shipping Week (LISW). Read more