ICS Appoints Guy Platten as New Secretary General

Following an extensive and rigorous selection procedure, the Board of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) is delighted to announce the appointment of Guy Platten to the role of Secretary General.

Esben Poulsson, ICS Chairman said: “This proved a difficult decision for us, as we interviewed several strong candidates. However, the decision to appoint Guy was taken unanimously by the Board. He will bring with him a broad range of skills including time at sea, demonstrable commercial success, and association work illustrated by his current successful tenure at the U.K. Chamber of Shipping.

“In a fast changing world, ICS, like any successful association, needs to be more aware than ever of the needs and demands of its members and to truly add value, be it on the regulatory front or in respect of the numerous other challenges facing the industry. ICS is the industry’s leading voice, with the important remit of highlighting the great improvements the industry has made and will continue to make as a key contributor to world trade.”

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People Power and New Technologies Debated at First InterManager Ship Managers’ Forum

Blockchain in the shipping industry, the safety culture among crew members, and the changing world of maritime payments were all debated at InterManager’s First Interactive Ship Managers’ Forum this week.
The conference, held on Monday, February 5,, was opened by Gary Pogson, Lead Specialist, Marine & Offshore Innovation Team, at Lloyd’s Register. Mr Pogson posed the question ‘distributed ledger for engineered systems – hype or hope?’
“A lot of the hype over the past year or so has been driven by ICOs or Initial Coin Offerings, facilitated by smart contract capabilities on blockchain platforms such as Ethereum – this is the new crowdfunding and the numbers are significant,” he said.
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Yemen Conflict Forces New Security Recommendations

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In response to the threats arising from the conflict in Yemen, BIMCO, ICS and INTERTANKO have published interim guidance on maritime security in the southern Red Sea and Bab al-Mandeb. Shipowners and operators should be aware of new threat patterns in the area.

The European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR) and the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) have advised that a range of threats other than piracy, such as sea mines and water-borne improvised explosive devices (WBIEDs), are potential risks in the area.

“We’ve been advised that these threats are real, and therefore decided to provide guidance for ships operating in the area. We have seen two incidents in January, and we want to make sure owners and operators are aware and advise their crews accordingly,” says Angus Frew, BIMCO Secretary General and CEO.  Read more

Risk Profiling is becoming more important to PSC Inspections

Port State Control inspections are increasingly focusing on the risk profile of the ship under inspection with inspectors singling out the performance of the ship manager and the flag state recognised organisation (RO) as major factors to concentrate on.

Petros Achtypis, Chief Executive Officer of Cyprus-based Prevention at Sea (PaSea), said PSC inspectors were changing the way they inspected ships with greater emphasis being placed on a vessel’s risk profile.

Many PSC Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) were starting to draw direct parallels between the risk profile of the ship and the performance of the ship manager and the RO.

“There is a growing trend to look at ways to identify operational and management risks and detect any pitfalls that could lead to accidents or injury,” he said.

Since risk assessment became part of the ISM Code the shipping industry has viewed risk identification and assessment as a simple process, limited to the use of one matrix – consequence x probability.

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Majority of Auxiliary Engine Damage Occurs Due to Human Error Warns The Swedish Club

Peter Stålberg Mar2017 JEK_7322An investigation by The Swedish Club into auxiliary engine damage has revealed that the majority of all damage takes place immediately after maintenance work. A key finding is that 55% of casualties occur within only 10% of the time between overhaul (TBO), corresponding to the first 1,000 hours or so of operation after overhaul. In most cases the damage occurs only a few hours after start up.

The report, Auxiliary Engine Damage, also finds that container vessels have a significantly higher claims frequency due to the larger number of installed engines on these vessels. In addition these engines have considerable output, leading to higher repair costs compared with other vessels.

Auxiliary Engine Damage, the latest report from The Swedish Club, has been created in response to the Club’s members’ concerns over damage to auxiliary engines – a significant segment of machinery claims, both in number and in cost.

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Industry Professional Steven Gosling to Play Key Role in Maritime Training at KVH Videotel

KVH Videotel announced today that Steven Gosling, a master mariner and former manager with leading maritime organizations, has joined KVH Videotel’s content team as quality assurance manager.

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Mr. Gosling’s responsibilities will include monitoring legislative movements, trends, and best practices in the industry, and guiding the KVH Videotel content and software development teams in serving the maritime community’s learning and development needs. Mr. Gosling will also be responsible for spearheading KVH Videotel’s continuing professional development (CPD) offering. Prior to joining KVH Videotel, Mr. Gosling held roles as head of strategic development for Nautilus International; training & quality manager for The Nautical Institute; and deck officer with the cruise ship industry. He earned an MSc. in maritime operations and management from City, University of London.

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InterDam Partners with VE Partners to Accelerate its Ambitious Growth Plans

InterDam, an international market leader in fire and blast resistant architectural products for the oil and gas and offshore renewables sectors, has partnered with VE Partners to accelerate its ambitious growth plans and continue the outstanding success it has achieved in supporting customers creating a safer workplace since its foundation in 2007.

Renowned as a product innovator of high-quality integrated solutions to the offshore and onshore oil & gas and renewable energy sectors, InterDam’s aim is to create the safest area possible for professionals and equipment working in high risk environments.

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Britannia P&I’s Preferred “Hard Brexit” Location Option

Following the 23 June 2016 referendum and the UK’s triggering of Article 50 on 29 March 2017, Britannia’s Board has been considering plans to preserve the ability of the Association to write non-UK EU business post Brexit (i.e. to preserve the current benefits of passporting).  Possible restrictions on the freedom of movement of staff between the UK and EU would not currently have a material impact on the Association, although this will be monitored.

It is hoped that discussions between the UK and the remaining EU states will allow for continued passporting or a transition arrangement.  In the meantime, Britannia’s plans assume a worst-case of a “hard Brexit” and the loss of passporting from 29 March 2019.

With the advice of third party consultants and having engaged with various EU regulators, Britannia’s Board has now instructed the Managers (Tindall Riley (Britannia) Limited) to focus on Luxembourg as the preferred option.  The structure envisaged is the maintenance of Britannia as a UK domiciled insurer and the creation of a new EU (Luxembourg) domiciled insurer.  Both insurers (Britannia UK and Britannia Europe) would be owned by a UK domiciled parent company.  This will preserve the nature of the Association as a single entity i.e. to maintain a common approach to risk appetite, underwriting, investment, reserving and operational procedures.

The Managers will engage further with the Association’s consultants and legal advisers together with the PRA (UK’s insurance regulator) and CAA (Luxembourg’s insurance regulator).  It is envisaged that a formal application to establish Britannia Europe will be made in early 2018 to enable the insurer to be licenced and operationally ready by the end of 2018 and in good time for the 20 February 2019 renewal.

At this stage it is not envisaged that a Part VII transfer will be required.

KVH and Pilipinas Global Network Limited to Bring Philippine Basketball Association Game Coverage to Merchant Ships

Starting next week, seafarers can enjoy coverage of Asia’s popular professional basketball league games via KVH’s innovative content delivery service

MIDDLETOWN, RI – December 14, 2017 – KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI), and Pilipinas Global Network Limited (PGNL) today announced a deal to bring coverage of Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) full games to merchant ships.

Under the terms of the agreement, KVH will distribute PBA games for the 43rd and 44th PBA seasons, which begin with the Philippine Cup on December 17, 2017. A men’s professional basketball league, the PBA was the first such league in Asia and its popularity throughout the region is widespread. However, many of those fans miss out on seeing games because they serve onboard commercial vessels; throughout the global shipping industry, Filipinos comprise the single greatest number of seafarers. The PBA games will be delivered via satellite to vessels subscribed to KVH’s SPORTSlinkTM and IP-MobileCastTM content delivery service for multicasting news, sports, and entertainment at sea. Onboard, seafarers will be able to access the full PBA games on mobile devices, desktops, and televisions, enjoying the basketball action without adding communications costs or affecting vessel communications performance. “PGNL is devoted to bringing the PBA closer to every Filipino overseas. This partnership with KVH is a step toward reaching out to seafarers who would want to experience the PBA while they’re away from home,” says Ernesto D. Sta. Maria, Jr., PGNL president and CEO. “We work hard to make sure that more Filipinos all over the world get to enjoy quality sports content from PGNL.”

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ICS Chairman Commends China’s Positive Engagement with IMO

MarintecIn his keynote speech to the Marintec conference in Shanghai today, Mr Poulsson welcomed China’s close adherence to the implementation of national maritime regulations, applicable to visiting foreign-flag ships, in a manner consistent with the international maritime safety and pollution prevention Conventions adopted by IMO.

He said that China generally avoided the tendency – unfortunately displayed by some other IMO Member States – towards adopting unilateral shipping regulations at variance to rules agreed internationally.

EU Member States, for example, despite what were understood to be undertakings to the contrary, appear to be pressing ahead with the implementation of a regional CO2 data collection system for ships (including visiting non-EU flag ships) which is very different to that agreed by IMO for global application.

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KVH Videotel Introduces LNG “Respond Level” Bunkering Training Course

Programme based on “Competency and Assessment Guidelines” from SGMF 

KVH Videotel has launched an LNG bunkering training course to help crew and port or terminal staff enable a safe bunkering process. The programme, based on guidelines from the Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel (SGMF), has been developed in response to the increased use of LNG as a bunker fuel by operators to help them meet the low sulphur targets required by MARPOL Annex VI. SGMF has defined a “Respond Level” of awareness as vitally important: Personnel in close proximity to bunkering operations must understand the hazards associated with LNG bunkering and be trained in how to respond to emergency situations. KVH Videotel’s “LNG Bunkering – Respond Level Training Course” covers:

  • Composition and usage of LNG and potential bunkering methods
  • Hazards and consequences for the individual and ship
  • Relevant procedures for fighting LNG fires
  • Emergency procedures for shipping companies and port authorities

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Elizabeth Jackson Joins KVH to Direct Global Marketing and Strategy

Experienced executive will lead growth initiatives across key business markets

MIDDLETOWN, RI – November 27, 2017 – KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI), announced today that Elizabeth Jackson has joined the company as chief marketing officer and senior vice president for strategy.

“Elizabeth is an experienced CMO and entrepreneur with proven results at both Fortune 100 and small start-up companies, and we are delighted that she has joined KVH,” says Martin Kits van Heyningen, KVH chief executive officer. “Her expertise includes brand building, new product development, corporate and marketing strategy, and market research across many industries.”

Ms. Jackson has worked at a variety of companies including Proctor & Gamble, Campbell Soup Company, Summer Infant, and HookLogic, a Bain Capital Ventures portfolio company in ad tech performance marketing. Most recently, Ms. Jackson was CMO at DOTS Technology Corp, an NEA portfolio company in health tech, building a novel protein detection platform for consumer and industrial use.

“I am very excited to join KVH and direct the marketing efforts for such an innovative company, especially one that is active in so many vital markets,” says Ms. Jackson. “From the mobile technology that provides connectivity to commercial mariners around the globe to the inertial navigation systems that support the emerging world of unmanned and autonomous platforms, KVH is a leader.”

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Ms. Jackson has a B.A. from Princeton University and an MBA from INSEAD in France.

Container Ship Load Planning Systems Are Vulnerable Says Ethical Hackers

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Ethical hackers Pen Test Partners have highlighted a vulnerability in the load planning processes used by container ships.

“Intercepting and modifying the messaging used in bay planning can be relatively straightforward if you know what you’re doing,” said Senior Partner, Ken Munro.

“When asked to investigate this, we noticed a lack of security in the validation of the message’s integrity and a simple phishing attack is all it takes to gain access,” he continued.

By modifying the messages, and therefore the loading plan itself, a hacker could cause a vessel to list by swopping the order that the containers are loaded.

Hackers could also cause environmental damage and incur heavy fines for shipping lines by forcing emergency discharge of ballast water as a result of unexpected out-of-trim situations caused by bay plan manipulation.

Refrigerated containers could be switched off spoiling thousands of pounds worth of perishable food and so the list goes on.

Not only that, but Pen Test Partners have discovered that USB sticks are commonly used to transfer the load plans from ship to port. This poses a major security risk as a USB infected with malware could cause series issues for port authorities.

“Ship security has a long way to go to catch up with the level of security we expect in corporate networks. They are remote, difficult to update, and their IT hardware is often old and not well maintained,” added Munro.

“Ship owners and managers need to have a cyber security plan in place and should review their current IT systems to make sure that any potential weak points open to attack are closed as soon as possible.”

Britannia P&I Hosts European Members’ Forum in Greece

The important role that Members from Europe play within the Britannia P&I Club was among the issues discussed at its annual European Members Forum held on 9 November in Athens.

The Forum, now in its 21st year, which was attended by 52 Members from across Europe, underlined the Club’s commitment to remaining accessible while providing Members with a personalised service.

The Forum coincided with the announcement that Britannia will be opening an office in Greece within 2018.

“Holding the European Forum in Greece was important given that it is the home to many of the world’s major shipowners, a number of whom are Britannia Members. Opening a Britannia office in Greece will mean that we can enhance the personalised service to those and future Greek Members,” said Andrew Cutler, CEO of Tindall Riley (Britannia) Ltd.

Dale Hammond (Director, FD&D and claims director for the Club’s Greek membership) and Simon Williams (Director, Underwriting and who has underwriting oversight for the Club’s Greek membership) will oversee arrangements for establishing the office.

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SKY Perfect JSAT and KVH to Deliver Maritime Broadband Services

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KVH extends its long-standing relationship with SKY Perfect JSAT

MIDDLETOWN, RI – November 20, 2017 – KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI), today announced that it has concluded arrangements with SKY Perfect JSAT (SJC) to work together in delivering next-generation maritime broadband services.

KVH’s advanced mini-VSAT Broadbandsm service will incorporate capacity from SJC’s satellites covering the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean regions, inclusive of unique southern Indian Ocean coverage. This new-generation maritime broadband service is designed to achieve maximum data speeds of 10 Mbps download, and 3 Mbps upload, using the new KVH TracPhone® V7-HTS, a 60 cm Ku-band maritime satellite antenna system that KVH designed for the advanced network.

In addition, SJC will be marketing and selling the next-generation service in Japan under the name “OceanBB.” According to SJC, entering into these agreements with KVH enables SJC to accelerate its development and provision of next-generation services that will meet the ever-growing demand for maritime broadband.

Britannia P&I Hosts Asian Members’ Forum in Hong Kong

Following Britannia’s P&I European Members’ Forum in Athens earlier this month, the Club also hosted an Asian Members’ Forum on 21st November in Hong Kong.

These regional Forums demonstrate the Club’s strategy of providing Members with a local personalised service, backed by a global presence in the market.

The Asian Members’ Forum outlined Britannia’s strategy, which has included the Club strengthening its presence in the region, with its Managers having recently taken over a longstanding Exclusive Correspondent with offices in both Tokyo and Kobe, Japan (renamed Tindall Riley (Britannia) Japan Ltd).

More announcements will follow in the coming months involving the Club’s initiatives in Hong Kong and Singapore.

“The Asian Members’ Forum is an important event given that half of our membership is based in the region. Enhancing our personalised service to Members by having dedicated Britannia owned local offices in key territories is vital,” said Andrew Cutler, CEO of Britannia and the Managers.

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Thome Opens Fleet Operations Hub

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The Thome Group has opened a modern operations hub at its offices in Singapore to enhance the quality of its ship management services and reaction times to emergency responses.

The state-of-the-art facilities enables situational awareness for both duty-personnel and Thome’s crisis teams, providing high tech systems allowing remote tracking of individual ships in the fleet, passage planning, security risk assessment, weather routing, video conferencing, integrated vessel management system (NAU) implementation, and individual on-board CCTV remote monitoring by the hub.

“The Operations Hub means that we now have an even closer control of our managed fleet, offering our clients up to date information and even greater improvements in our ship management services. The monitoring capabilities provided by the hub will enable us to direct our managed fleet more efficiently saving time and improving our operational efficiency,” said Claes Eek Thorstensen, President and CCO of the Thome Group.

“Furthermore, in times of emergency we can react much more quickly and get faster and more accurate information about the situation in real time, allowing our crisis teams to make informed decisions on how to resolve any issues,” he continued.

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Prevention at Sea Cleans Up with Another Award for its Oil Record Book Software

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Prevention at Sea has won more industry recognition for its software development work in the maritime industry, by winning the Tanker Shipping & Trade Award for Technical Innovation.

Developed in conjunction with the Liberian Ship Registry, PaSea has once again shown that it is at the vanguard of the drive to minimise risk in the global shipping industry.

This award follows hot on the heels of similar accolades recently presented to the company including:

  • May 2017 – Winner of the Lloyd’s List Americas 2017 Maritime Services Award
  • October 2017 – Winner of the Lloyd’s List Intelligence Asia Pacific Innovation Award
  • October 2017- Winner of the NAMEPA Marine Environment Protection Award for Innovation

It is also a finalist for the Lloyd’s List South Asia, Middle East & Africa Innovation Award on 28th November 2017.

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The Swedish Club Celebrates 35 Years in Hong Kong

Brian Png 2The Swedish Club has celebrated the 35th Anniversary of its office in Hong Kong. Since the office was established, the Club has seen steady and consistent growth in its business in the area – both in terms of its full service product offerings and the tonnage insured.

The Swedish Club is also pleased to announce that Brian Png has been promoted to Deputy Managing Director for The Swedish Club in Hong Kong, as of 1 January 2018. Brian is well known to the Asian shipping community and joined The Swedish Club in 2009.

Lars Rhodin, Managing Director of The Swedish Club said: “When we established The Swedish Club in Hong Kong in 1982 we saw a great opportunity to establish a foothold in Asia. At that time Hong Kong had one of the busiest container ports in the world with sophisticated communications and an advanced banking infrastructure.

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Columbia Marlow wins top industry award

Columbia Marlow Tanker Shipping & Trade AwardColumbia Marlow has won the Tanker Shipping & Trade Operational Excellence Award for 2017 for its work in pushing the boundaries in innovation and digitalisation in the global maritime industry.

Receiving the award at an Awards Dinner in London’s West End, Mark O’Neil, Columbia Marlow CEO, described the partnership with Lufthansa Industry Solutions as “industry disruptive” and ‘transformational’. He praised the expertise and focus of Lufthansa and Columbia Marlow’s inhouse IT/Digitalisation specialists Blue Dynamics enabling Columbia Marlow to formulate its Digital Vision and Digital Agenda and embark upon its objective to provide the highest standards of information technology and performance monitoring in the industry.

Blue Dynamics – a cutting edge software company previously set up by Columbia and Marlow – and Lufthansa Industry Solutions announced they would work together in partnership with Columbia Marlow in May of this year in what was described as a new era for blue sky thinking in the maritime sector.

The partnership was formed to create a fully digital environment consisting of integrated applications and services which enable clients to be fully integrated into the management and vessel operation process, and render the vessels more employable by being compatible with the digital environment of the big charterers and shippers. Such a new digital environment will not only empower staff with more information to assist them in their decision-making processes, ensure optimisation of vessel maintenance and performance, allow for better monitoring of crew training and pastoral needs, but will also help immeasurably in achieving economies and efficacies of scale. All this tailored to the specific needs of each individual client, large and small.

Mark O’Neil concluded his acceptance speech by confirming that Columbia Marlow considered the digitalisation process as being of “existential importance for shipping” and that Columbia Marlow was determined to take the lead in this process for the benefit of its clients and future clients. “This is Partnership Redefined” he said.

Photo caption: From L-R: Ralf Struckmeier (Lufthansa), Mark O’Neil (Columbia Marlow), Timothy Scheller (Blue Dynamics), Dr. Carsten Boehle (Lufthansa)