Category: Member Profile

Member Profile: Darrell Bate, Marine Society and Sea Cadets

In this month’s edition of  our ‘Member Profile’, we spoke with Darrell Bate from the Marine Society & Sea Cadets, Britain’s oldest, and the leading maritime charity for youth development and lifelong learning…


Can you tell us about Marine Society and Sea Cadets (MSSC)?

Marine Society is Britain’s oldest maritime charity, dating back to 1756, originally founded to recruit young boys for the Royal Navy. Nowadays, we support the wider maritime sector, both ‘wet’ and ‘dry’ sides with apprenticeship training, online courses, bursaries, careers advice and even a crew library and bookshop service.


What is your role within the Company?

I came onboard as the Marine Society’s Director of Maritime Training and Development in 2019. I head up a department who’s purpose it to support and serve aspiring seafarers and professionals through education, training and careers support. Developing maritime curriculum for schools and colleges and delivering a range of apprenticeships and online learning courses via the Marine Society College and in partnership with the Sea Cadets.


What is your career background?

I started my career in the Merchant Navy as a deck officer. I had previously worked in further and higher education for 20 years, so it was wonderful to find a job that combined both elements.


What are your hobbies outside of work?

I have my own boat, a 34’ trawler yacht which takes up a lot of spare time (and money). I also enjoy theatre and film, having been an actor myself in a previous life!


What has MSSC achieved so far?

In April there was the official opening of the National Support Centre, which is an administrative hub for the Sea Cadets and is by far the larger element of the work of the charity. We’re based near the IMO in central London so well placed for shipping firms as well. We are also always seeking new ways of supporting seafarers. Following COVID-19 it has become very evident that seafarers are key workers and face very difficult working conditions. Our learning programmes are specifically designed to help them progress their careers and we now have a well-developed mentoring programme to support those who want to leave the sea and come ashore.


What is Learn@Sea?

Simply put, it is online learning for personal development and accredited qualifications. We believe seafarers deserve access to life-enhancing education wherever they are in the world. Our Learn@Sea platform offers practical courses that can be studied anywhere at any time and for a very reasonable cost. For example, English can be difficult, especially when you’re away from home and working long hours, but they are essential subjects if you want to get promoted, move ashore, or develop other skills for your career. Alternatively, we also started the LEARN@SHORE series. If you are looking to further your maritime career shoreside then we have an eclectic range of courses to help refine or develop your skillset for a job role ashore. Our range covers everything from fundamental core subjects to sector specific commercial shipping courses – Marine Insurance, Port Management, Tanker Chartering and Shipping Law for example.


What is the MSSC’s involvement with Apprenticeships?

The Marine Society and Sea Cadets is a government approved training provider specialising in marine and outdoor apprenticeships. Whether you are an employer looking to take on an apprentice or train your existing staff or an aspiring apprentice looking for the right training opportunity, you can find all the relevant information on our website. MSSC Apprenticeships include; Workboat Crewmember, Officer of the Watch (Near Coastal), Marina and Boatyard Operative, Outdoor Activity Instructor, Port Operative, and Port Agent.


What can you say about volunteering with MSSC?

Please sign up!! We can only meet demand for Sea Cadet places where we have the volunteers. We have a well-structured training programme in place for volunteers, previous experience not necessary although by nature, we do attract those coming from a naval or maritime background. It is very rewarding, and you get lots of boating opportunities including aboard our offshore fleet of power and sail vessels.

Member Profile: Ben Pym, EMS

Danielle met with Ben Pym to find out what the story is behind new-start, south coast business ‘EMS’;


Can you tell us about Engineered Marine Systems?

Engineered Marine Systems (EMS) is based in Southampton, UK. We specialise in marine systems design, working with naval architects, shipyards, OEMs, owners, and operators. Our business offering is split to three areas. We do vessel wide systems design in 2D and 3D. Covering mechanical,
electrical, domestic, and hydraulic disciplines with Class compliance, production detail and Bill of Materials for shipyard installation. We also design and manufacture a range of mechanical products, such as actuating platforms, doors, anchor systems in both the leisure and commercial sector. And
we’re a Palfinger Marine Crane dealer in the UK supporting operators in technical sales, service, and maintenance.


What is your role within the Company?

I founded EMS in 2017 and have continued as Managing Director of the company. A lot of my time is taken up with running the company and overseeing the various projects we have in progress at any given time. But I still get to do some design work – which is great because that is what I enjoy.


What is your career background?

I’ve always been around boats, racing dinghies through the RYA squad system as a junior and youth and later racing and maintaining race yachts in my teens and through university. I studied Naval Architecture at Solent University, after which I worked as Systems Design Engineer for a company
who specialised in the design and installation of bespoke performance yacht systems for the grandprix end of the market. I was fortunate enough to be involved in some cutting-edge projects with enormously varied requirements, but it was all about one thing, performance. Making the boats
lighter, faster, stronger and more capable to give the edge on the racecourse. That ethos, although often in the commercial sector so slightly different, has remained in the delivery of our design and products for our customers today.


What excites you most about your job?

The people I get to work with. Our customers come to us because they want their vessel to be the best in the fleet. Whether it’s our Nav Arc clients, vessel operators or shipyards, they’ve made an active decision to invest in design as a result they typically get a superior product. We get to work
with the client direct to better understand their requirements and work with them to deliver a complete solution. It’s been fantastic sharing the 3D systems model with operators for example, some of whom have not seen this maturity in design, and who can see exactly where equipment is
positioned in engine rooms, tech spaces, around walkways to ensure they have clear access and good service space on their new vessel. It’s 21st century shipbuilding!


What are your hobbies outside of work?

I still sail as much as I can in our 1958 Firefly dinghy. I’m training for a marathon at the end of the year, and when not sailing or running I’m maintaining and driving (when it’s in one piece) my 1957 Austin A35.


What has Engineered Marine Systems achieved so far?

We’ve achieved a strong business growth since 2017 and continued to invest and develop our design team. Looking forward and we’re keen to support more customers across the commercial marine sector. We achieved our ISO9001 LRQA Management System certification earlier this year in the
interest of improving our business processes. We took on the Palfinger dealership 2021 and have invested in training of our team to better support our customer base.

We’ve been involved in a number of forward-thinking projects across hybrid CTV’s, methanol projects, decarbonisation studies and defence demonstrator projects. We’ve also been fortunate enough support project further afield in the US and Asia workboat markets.


What are your goals for Engineered Marine Systems?

To continue to offer forward thinking, high-quality, elegant design solutions that fundamentally improve the user experience, operational efficiency, reduce build time, and contribute to long term more sustainable operation!


Why did you decide to become a member of The Workboat Association?

A large portion of our projects are in the workboat sector, so its natural fit. As a relatively young company we want to raise our profile and meet likeminded people in the industry. We also have a lot to offer technically on the journey of decarbonisation of the industry. Environmental
sustainability will be systems led, and we’re working on several projects bringing solutions to the marine sector which we look forward to sharing.


How do you feel The Workboat Association can benefit you?
We’ll look to attend as many WA events throughout the year as possible to meet others in the network and we’ll have the opportunity share our technical experience, contributing to the direction and improvements in the sector.

Member Profile: Adrian Birkin, Vulkan Industries

Following the inaugural WA golf day, Adrian Birkin spoke with us to tell us more about the man behind the UK business


Can you tell us about Vulkan?
Vulkan is one of 21 subsidiaries of the Vulkan group, Vulkan is family owned and market
leader in couplings for ships with approximately 1400 people worldwide. Currently there are
13 of us in the UK with plans to add more this year and next, taking us to 18 in the UK.

What is your role within the Company?
I am the Managing Director.

What is your career background?
Before Vulkan I wasn’t involved with the Marine industry – I had been working in the
industrial background and looked after EMEA region For Fenner European Region for Pix and
then before Vulkan I set up Ringfeder in the UK.

What excites you most about your job?
Something different everyday with the thrill of growing and winning business.

What are your hobbies outside of work?
I am a football coach and have just finished the season winning the league and cup.

What has Vulkan achieved so far?
Vulkan is now double the size since joining.

What are your goals for Vulkan next year?
To be triple the size from when I started in 2019.

Why did you decide to become a member of The Workboat Association?
Martin Jackson of PME told us we should join as we work closely with him. Vulkan in the UK
was and is prominent on the larger ships, but we want to grow and see the opportunities in
workboats. It is probably the biggest growth area for the UK Marine sector.

How do you feel The Workboat Association can benefit you?
You help us make some new contacts and generally meet the right people as we did at the
recent dinner and hopefully on your Golf Day.



Member Profile: Jack Deverell, Thamescraft dry docking

Based in the centre of London, on the Greenwich Peninsula. Thamescraft has been servicing the Thames fleet since the 1980’s, but more recently the company has been working further afield…


Can you tell us about Thamescraft?

Thamescraft was set up as a boat yard on The River Thames nearly 40 years ago by my dad, Paul. We operate three floating dry docks in London. The business has always owned its own workboats that serviced the yard and in the last ten years or so the marine services side of the business has developed well and has become independent in itself.


What is your role within the Company?

My role is operations director, I’m based in London at our boat yard where I project manage dry-dockings as well as manage our fleet of tugs and multicats.


What is your career background?

I began working on the River Thames at the age of 16 and worked up from a deck hand to skipper. In my early 20’s I began to spend more time working in the dry-docking side of Thamescraft where I now spend most of my time.


What excites you most about your job?

I’ve had a keen interest in tugs since I was young. I’d spend my summer holidays playing around in small open workboats- now I get to play around with much bigger ones. I enjoy the wide variety of tasks our vessels carry out, from towing to plough dredging and everything in between.


What are your hobbies outside of work?

When I’m not working, I try to spend as much time as I can with my daughters, Emilia and Sophia who both have multicats named after them.


What has Thamescraft achieved so far?

We have worked on some brilliant marine civils projects in recent years. Most of these have been on the Thames, but in the last few years we’ve begun working further afield. Last year we worked on the Hinkly Point project for DEME and also in the Outer Hebrides.


What are your goals for Thamescraft?

I’d like to see us continue the path we’re on, progressively modernising our fleet, working up to larger vessels and continuing to work on interesting projects.

Why did you decide to become a member of The Workboat Association?

We’ve been lucky enough to receive a great deal of guidance from other WA members as we started out in the industry, it just made sense for us to become part of the community.


How do you feel The Workboat Association can benefit you?

We use the various training and good practice aids regularly as we develop our management systems and train our crews. It’s really helpful how the association notifies us of any changes in code or regulation that will affect our business too.


Member Profile: Tim Greenwood, Alpha Marine

Danielle spoke with Tim Greenwood to find out about the Wicklow based workboat operator Alpha Marine


Can you tell us about Alpha Marine?

Alpha Marine is a tug, workboat and marine services company based on the east coast of Ireland
in Wicklow – just south of Dublin. We own and operate two tugs and two CTVs. The company
was founded in 2004 and is currently run by myself and my brother Simon. We are part owned
by Mainport, a larger Irish shipping and marine organisation.

While we are based in Ireland we have worked in the UK on various projects over the years in
Marine Civils and Offshore Wind. Our four vessels are UK Flag and dual coded for Irish waters.
In recent years we have moved into larger projects putting solutions together for clients with a
network of strong supply chain partners which involve chartered vessels.

What is your role within the Company?

In addition to being Managing Director, I take particular responsibility for HSEQ Management as
well as Business Development. Like any small business I am always involved in project delivery.

What is your career background?

I have worked in a diverse range of industries over my career but have spent the last 20 years or
so in the Tug and Workboat sector.

What excites you most about your job?

I just love working on a marine business, it’s in my blood. Every day excites me because there
are so many possibilities and opportunities. More than anything, doing a good job for a client
makes me happy.

What are your hobbies outside of work?

I’ve been a leisure sailor all my life and continue to race and cruise offshore. I have a small
motorboat in the West of Ireland and enjoy weekends aboard it fishing, boating and swimming. I
love mountain biking and living in Wicklow we have excellent trails here. Mountain biking keeps
me fit and active. Too old for rugby now but love watching and supporting Ireland. Finally,
when not too busy I enjoy playing snooker.


What has Alpha Marine achieved so far?

We’ve developed a strong business here in the Irish Sea for the charter of Tugs and Workboats.
The company has some great bluechip clients and we have a super network of partners and
subcontractors who we work with to deliver turnkey solutions to nearshore and offshore


What are your goals for Alpha Marine?

To continue to grow the business and make it more successful for shareholders and employees.
To ensure our excellent safety record continues.

Why did you decide to become a member of The Workboat Association?

The work that the WA does is highly commendable on so many fronts. Alpha Marine can benefit
hugely from the resources, knowledge, and contacts that the WA provides. We also very much
enjoy meeting fellow operators, exchanging yarns and comparing experiences.


How do you feel The Workboat Association can benefit you?
As above but additionally we can prepare for legislative changes, keep abreast of
technological advances, and critically ensure we develop the very best safety procedures and
record possible.

Member profile: Karl Birgir Björnsson, Hefring Marine

This month we spoke to Karl Birgir Björnsson of Hefring Marine to understand their history and why they joined the Workboat Association.



Can you tell us about Hefring Marine?

Hefring Marine is an Icelandic deep-tech company that offers advanced maritime solutions to professional fleet operators. Their flagship product, IMAS, is an on-board AI system that collects real-time data from vessel motions, engines, and instruments to improve safety and efficiency. IMAS generates speed guidance for prevailing sea conditions, reduces the risk of accidents or damage to the craft and personnel on board, and centralizes collected fleet data for analysis and reporting. At Hefring Marine, a team of experts in vibration and condition monitoring, algorithm development, and engineering are dedicated to providing cutting-edge solutions for the unique demands of professional vessel operators.


What is your role within the Company?

As the CEO and Co-founder of Hefring Marine, my role is to lead the company’s strategic direction and oversee day-to-day operations, as well as working with our team of experts in the continuous development of our company’s flagship product, the Intelligent Marine Assistance System or IMAS. I am also heavily involved in business development and building relationships with clients and partners. I believe that collaboration and partnership are key to our success, and I am always seeking new opportunities to grow and expand our business.


What is your career background?

I have a degree in Business Development from the University of Kent and the City University of Hong Kong. Prior to starting Hefring, I worked at Össur hf., a global prosthetics and orthotics company, as a senior financial analyst in Corporate Development, focusing on mergers and acquisitions, Corporate Development, and Business Control. I entered the maritime industry in 2017 when I joined Icelandic boat manufacturer, Rafnar ehf., as Head of Business Development. While there, I developed sales, marketing, and partnership strategies, and it was during my time at Rafnar ehf. that the Hefring Marine project was born as a spin-off from research conducted on boat motions and wave impacts.


What excites you most about your job?

The opportunity to lead a team of experts dedicated to providing cutting-edge data-driven solutions to the unique and complex challenges facing professional fleet operators. I am passionate about leveraging technology to solve complex problems and am constantly seeking new ways to enhance our offerings.


What are your hobbies outside of work?

I am passionate about my work, but my family is a top priority for me, and I enjoy spending quality time with my loved ones. Exercise is another important aspect of my life, and I make it a point to stay active on a regular basis. I enjoy running, weightlifting, and participating in various fitness challenges. Basketball is a sport I have loved since I was a kid, and I still enjoy playing it with friends whenever I get the chance. I also enjoy exploring new places and trying new foods, experimenting with new recipes in my own kitchen.


What has Hefring Marine achieved so far?

Hefring Marine began as a research project in late 2018 but the concept received its first financial backing and commercial interest in 2019. When the pandemic hit, we used the opportunity to advance the system’s development, working with partners and our first customers who had the opportunity to receive prototype versions of the Hefring Marine IMAS system before the pandemic hit. By the end of 2021, we had our first commercial version of Hefring Marine IMAS ready for deployment and the first customers begun installing their systems in January 2022. By the end of the year, we had sold multiple systems and collected just under 100,000 km worth of operating data from various vessels around the world. We continue to grow and evolve the solution, pushing out new features and learning with our partners and customers how we can better target their problems, such as fuel consumption, safety, maintenance and asset longevity, with data-driven solutions for active operating guidance, monitoring and analytics.

What are your goals for Hefring Marine?

Our goal is for Hefring Marine to be a one-stop-shop solution for all data-driven needs of the modern vessel fleet. From curbing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions and improving the safety of passengers and crew, to ensuring a high-level overview of the fleet, logging vessel performance, negotiating improved insurance premiums to managing maintenance logs and predictions, Hefring Marine IMAS will have the solution for you.


Why did you decide to become a member of The Workboat Association?

Hefring Marine understands the importance of being part of a network of like-minded professionals in the maritime industry. The Workboat Association is a highly respected association that represents the interests of commercial workboat owners and operators, and offers valuable resources and networking opportunities.


How do you feel The Workboat Association can benefit you?

Becoming a member allows Hefring Marine to connect with other members of the industry, stay up to date with the latest trends and developments, and showcase our innovative solutions to potential customers. It also provides a platform for Hefring Marine to collaborate with other members on issues related to the industry, and to share knowledge and expertise.

Get to Know: Danielle Metcalfe, WA Communication and marketing Officer

In this month’s Newsletter we are getting to know Danielle Metcalfe, who has recently joined the Workboat Association on a part-time basis whilst also working for Carmet Tug Company…


What is your career background?

After leaving school I went to Liverpool Hope University to study teaching and after 3 years I decided to tell my parents that teaching wasn’t for me. As you can imagine, this didn’t go down to well! This is where my career turned towards general administration work and where I spent most of my years. I worked for the NHS for quite a while where I got into marketing & communications and realised that I really enjoyed it and felt like I was actually good at something. This led me to where I am now…

I’ve been in the Maritime sector since joining Carmet in 2019 – a few of you probably recognise my surname… My husband is Josh Metcalfe, and my Father-in-Law is Brett Metcalfe, Directors of Carmet. Josh passed over my details to Kerrie at the WA, knowing how much I enjoy this line of work, and this is how I have ended up working for them!


What excites you most about working for the Workboat Association?

As mentioned above, I really enjoy the marketing and communications side of things and getting quite creative with digital and design work – I am not an expert in this field, but I like to think I have lots of ideas! I’m hoping I become an asset to the team and can make a difference to their work.

I also have the opportunity to see the Maritime sector from a different perspective, which I find really interesting. I love learning and expanding my knowledge.


What are your hobbies outside of work?

I don’t have as much free-time as I used to – as we had a baby in June 2022, so she takes up a lot of our attention! We do like to do things as a family or go walking. She is a very nosy baby so we’re lucky that she loves to get out and about and see the world. She’s already been on her first holiday abroad and we’re hoping to do a lot more of this throughout the year!

I’m a big Liverpool FC supporter, although this doesn’t feel great to say at the moment (if you follow football, you will know that Liverpool are not having a great spell).


I look forward to having the opportunity to work with many of you along the way.

Member Profile: Taras Pavlyuk, AST Applied Telematics

Harvey Tebay caught up with Taras Pavlyuk of AST Applied Telematics to find out more about his background and his role within the organisation


What is your career background?

I completed a degree in Business Computing and took a year travelling in 2009. I started my sales career working for an insurance broker Adrian Flux, specialising in classic car insurance . I moved into recruitment industry concentrating on IT and software market, gaining knowledge through my university degree assisted me with technical terminologies and full understanding of the clients requirements. Then two and a half years ago I joined AST, where I am now the lead for ASTs advanced vessel performance monitoring technology.


What first drew you towards maritime?

Coming from recruitment background, my initial knowledge of the maritime sector was slim, however the advantage for me was the fact a number of my clients that I had already built a strong professional relationship with were actually within the maritime industry. Knowing their backgrounds and the projects they were working on, such as renewables energy etc, gave me a much better overview of the maritime sector which became incredibly appealing.


What is your role at your AST Telematics and how does a day in your life look?

I am a Technical Sales Engineer at AST, my role involves a mixture of new business enquiries and account management to our existing customers. We provide software as a service, therefore my aim is to make sure each client gets the best value from our data technology. Every day/week is varied as I do a lot of travelling to customers sites for product demonstration (especially now as travel restrictions are lifted), engaging with product development by gathering customer feedback on how we can improve our platform. I enjoy attending conferences and maritime events as it gives great opportunity to network with new and existing clients, and it helps me to understand the latest industry trends.


What is your motivator at work?

For me is being able to deliver and exceed what is expected from us by our customers and beating our competition (gentlemanly), that’s a really good feeling.


In both your previous and current roles, what have been some of the standout activities that you have been involved with?

For me the stand out activities has been winning big contracts such as with ABP and North Star Shipping, receiving full trust from end user customers that we can meet their expectations across their whole assets.


What are your hobbies outside of work?

I keep myself fairly active outside work as I am keen golfer, currently a member of a links golf course in Norfolk. I like to keep physically in shape, so tend to go to the gym at least 3 times a week – providing time is on my side. I am also a proud father to our beautiful daughter, who is just over 10 months old now, so very much enjoy our family time and outings.


What advice do you give to anyone interested in a career within maritime?

At first when I was joining the maritime sector, I thought it was going to be so huge that I would struggle getting to terms with all its details and intricacies, however in fact its not big at all! Everyone seem to know everyone, all very friendly, assisting each other with the latest trends and possibilities. There are some really exciting projects happening, particularly within the offshore industry, which is so exciting to be part of. Its definitely a fascinating and rewarding industry.


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Member Profile: Rob Wanless, Rix Shipping Company


What is your career background?

After two years in farming after leaving school, I joined John H Whitaker (Tankers) who operated twenty-five tanker barges on the river Humber involved in the transportation of fuels and bunkers. After ten years I moved to the JR Rix Group selling fuels, then routing and planning the barge bunker deliveries, with general operational duties and latterly full crewing responsibilities.


What first drew you towards maritime?

Living near busy ports I was always drawn to watching vessels loading/unloading and manoeuvring and at an early age enjoyed travelling on Ferries, plus the canal barges held an interest for me. Fishing was very big at the time and the port of Hull had a proud heritage, and with this and all the subsider activities, I guess that was my destiny!

What is your role at Rix Shipping and how does a day in your life look?

I am the crewing manager for Rix Shipping covering the CTVs, Barges and Sea going ships. A typical morning starts with a routine tracking of the vessel locations and a look at the up-and-coming projects, checking the manning requirements for each vessel according to the charter and the safe manning certificates. Each day is different but involves much communication, tact and “persuasion”!

What is your motivator at work?

Seeing the vessels sail with a good crew who work well together. One of the big things in recruitment is not only the experience and certification of the crew, but they have to also work well together as they spend more time living with colleagues than family.

In both your previous and current roles, what have been some of the standout activities that you have been involved with?

Sense of achievement when all deliveries were made to schedule keeping the clients happy and ensuring they will always use us again. There is much satisfaction when we see a trainee deckhand progress to be a skipper.

What are your hobbies outside of work?

I like to go to big music venues having played in bands in my younger days. Also, enjoy family time in the countryside

What advice do you give to anyone interested in a career within maritime?

It is a rewarding varied career with ever-changing technologies, especially in the renewables sector. It is one of the most essential industries to the UK and globally, and it will always be so.


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Member Profile: Vikrant Bharat, Vessconn Maritime

One of the Workboat Association’s newest members, Vik Bharat gives us an insite into his business – Vessconn Maritime.

– Can you introduce us to Vessconn Maritime?

VM is a company which offers transparent connections and collaborations between multiple stakeholders; like vessel operators and the providers of supplies, services and training. Contributing towards the continued digitisation and optimisation of the maritime sector, with an emphasis on creating value for all parties by ensuring that the resources of our customers remain focused on their core job. VM aims to empower its stakeholders, by providing integrated, on-demand digital solutions, combined with strategic and administrative support functions which will improve operational efficiency, streamline business processes, and uncover valuable insights that will drive profits and growth for its users.

– What is your career background?

I am a Master Mariner professionally, my career in the maritime industry has been a very versatile one. I started my deep sea sailing at the age of 17. After sailing for more than 15 years (in various roles from Cadet to ship’s Master) I came ashore where I was then involved in many more varied designations; from education and training to safety management, then setting up a commercial operations department and studying myself! These opportunities provided me a close insight into the merits and demerits of processes and procedures within Maritime. I completed my MBA from Middlesex University in 2012.

– How did you first develop the idea?

During my career at sea and ashore there were many instances where I found that my time was being wasted in carrying out trivial tasks, I could have devoted that time in doing more important core jobs which could have benefitted the company in a bigger way. I carried this question throughout my journey and especially during my career ashore, how to bring in the concept of “Lean” into routine maritime operations? The answer and idea was simple, through “Digitalisation”, which we all know is crucial to the future of maritime and the worlds economics.

– What first drew you towards maritime?

Alluring job prospects, the opportunity to roam around the world, to live and work with multinational people, to learn transferable skills and above all – to start early in life. Some of my friends were still studying while I started earning and expanding my career.

What do you see as the greatest concern in vessel procurement?

My greatest concern is how to choose the right vendor /right supplier, as a lot of companies provide very similar products & services. Making the right choice is essential, as the end user is not working in the office but is working on board the vessel, at sea, where the right quality products do make a big difference (there is no ‘nipping to the shop’ to buy a new product if the original doesn’t function or perform correctly). For example: There is an well-known correlation when it comes to the food on board and the happiness of the crew, it might look an easy task to procure quality food products, however it has its unique challenges. Products of quality will keep the crew healthy, focused and happy. However, this comes at a cost and how many times when we order do we check if the supplier is HACCP (food safety) certified let alone check their ethics or reliability up-front?

– What is the recent news from Vessconn Maritime?

Vessconn Maritime is working to enhance its digital solution through AI and aims to provide a network – like a reef, which covers less than one percent of the ocean floor, but supports an estimated twenty-five percent of all marine life! Our vision is to establish a digital reef of maritime providers for services, supplies and training.
The plan is to evolve the model further on the principle of ‘One-way Multisided Platform’ to cause a network effect as it attracts multiple users to become the part of the reef. We are collaborating with high grade data solution companies that are helping us to unlock innovation and eventually to provide us with AI tools that will revolutionise the entire supply chain model within the industry.

– Do you see any trends in requirements for the Workboat Sector?

The most important requirement I see is to understand and capture emissions, similar to bigger ships. Currently the focus is to reduce the carbon footprint from our facilities and ships (also known as direct emissions). However, very soon industry will be asked to reduce its indirect emissions as well. Workboats have already started to obtain early technologies which will reduce sector emissions and have a demonstrative effect throughout the wider maritime industry. With so many things to think about and do, its worth mentioning that Vessconn Maritime can assist the workboat owners/operators by making short-lists and suggestions for trusted and experienced supply chain services. Taking a lot of time and stress away from the vessel management to concentrate on the bigger picture.

– What are your hobbies outside of work?

I like to visit nature reserves, I enjoy playing Golf and sometimes get to play the drums with my son on his guitar by my side.