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Saturday, March 25, 2017

File photo: Hamburg Süd

Maersk Line, Hamburg Sud Offer Merger Concessions to Gain EU Approval

Maersk Line, the world's biggest container shipping firm and part of Danish conglomerate A.P. Moller-Maersk, has offered concessions to EU antitrust regulators in an attempt to get approval for the takeover of German rival Hamburg Sud. A ruling on the deal, one of several in an industry seeking consolidation to offset low freight rates and oversupply, will now be given by the European Commission by April 10, according to the commission's website on Wednesday. The deadline was…

File photo: Hapag-Lloyd

Container Shippers Ordered to Testify in US Investigation

The U.S. Justice Department has ordered top executives from several container shipping lines to testify in an antitrust investigation into an industry that is the backbone of global trade, the companies said on Wednesday. The world's biggest container shipper, Denmark's A.P. Moller-Maersk, Germany's Hapag Lloyd, Taiwan-based Evergreen, Hong Kong-based Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) said their executives were among those who had been subpoenaed. The United States is concerned that the proposed alliances of several major companies…

(L-R) Ricky Kunz, Chief Commercial Officer, Port of Houston Authority; Eng. Ibrahim Al-Omar, Group CEO, Bahri; Sultan Al Angari, Consul General of Saudi Arabia in Houston; and Steven Blowers, Country Manager, Bahri Logistics (America) (Photo: Bahri)

Bahri Opens Office in Houston

Bahri has opened its second North American office in Houston, home to one of the country’s largest breakbulk and general cargo ports. The new location is Bahri’s second in North America, following Bahri Logistics (America), which has been operating out of Bahri’s U.S. headquarters in Baltimore since 1992. The Bahri (America) Houston office will be led by Cliff Kuhfeldt, an 18-year shipping industry veteran, who will be responsible for the U.S. Gulf and South Atlantic territory reporting to Steven Blowers, Country Manager, Bahri Logistics (America).

Photo: SM Line Corp

SM Group Mulls More Takeovers

South Korea’s Samra Midas Group (SM Group) said that it is looking to acquire some overseas shippers, among other businesses in an effort to expand its foothold in the maritime sector, Yonhap News Agency cited one of the company’s officials. SM Group, which was picked as the preferred bidder for STX Corp., a general trading company, last week, also purchased the now-defunct Hanjin Shipping Co.'s U.S.-Asia route and other assets for 37 billion won (US$32 million) late last year. SM Group plans to pour 130 billion won ($115 million) into STX.

DP World London Gateway. Photo: DP World

DP World’s Net Income Exceed USD 1 Bln for First Time

Dubai-based port and terminal operator DP World announced strong financial results from its global portfolio for the twelve months ending 31 December 2016, despite “significant challenges” in the industry. On a reported basis, revenue grew 4.9% and adjusted EBITDA increased 17.4% with adjusted EBITDA margin of 54.4%, delivering profit attributable to owners of the Company, before separately disclosed items, of $1,127 million, up 27.6%, and EPS of 135.7 US cents. Its volumes have continued to grow ahead of the market with gross volumes growing 3.2% vs. Drewry full year market estimate of 1.3%.

Pic: Ezra Holdings

Ezra Holdings Files for Bankruptcy in US

Oilfield services firm Ezra Holdings of Singapore filed for U.S. Chapter 11 bankruptcy at the weekend, blaming a prolonged slump in the energy industry, Reuters reported. Ezra  has been facing hostile actions from creditors at home and abroad as it struggles to recover from a slump in oil prices over the past three years. The company filed voluntary petitions for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code, according to a stock exchange filing on Sunday. Ezra will…

Photo: Tsakos Energy Navigation

TEN Strengthens Vessel Base

Tsakos Energy Navigation (TEN)'s growth has continued unabated in 2017 with the delivery of one VLCC, the Hercules I, one aframax tanker the Marathon TS and the shuttle tanker Lisboa, currently all under long-term employment to solid counterparties. These came on the back of nine vessels that were delivered or acquired in 2016 and will be followed in 2017 by the last four, of nine, aframaxes that were built against long-term employment to a Norwegian oil major. With the delivery of these remaining high-end aframaxes…

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Photo: PIB

Mumbai Harbour Channel and JN Port Channel to Expand

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, India chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Wednesday approved fresh estimates of the project Deepening and Widening of Mumbai Harbour Channel and JN Port Channel (Phase-II). The cost of the project will be Rs 2029 crore excluding the Service Tax. The entire project cost will be funded through internal resources of JN Port Trust (JNPT) with market borrowing, if necessary. The project includes the existing channel to be widened from presently 370 m to 450 m for straight reach, channel to be extended from existing 33.5 Kms to 35.5 Kms.

Photo: Thessaloniki Port Authority

Thessaloniki Port Workers Plan Stoppage to Protest Port Sale

Workers at Greece's second-biggest port, Thessaloniki Port, will walk off their job for a few hours on Wednesday to protest the port's sale, a key condition of the country's international bailout. The sale was launched in 2014 but has been plagued by delays and political resistance. As part of its privatisation drive under its latest bailout, Greece has given investors until March 24 to submit binding bids for a 67 percent stake in the port and taking over its operation for 40 years.

File photo: Hapag-Lloyd

Hapag-Lloyd Says Prospects Buoyed by Rising Freight Rates

German container shipping company Hapag-Lloyd expects increased operating earnings this year, it said on Friday, citing a rise in freight rates as market conditions improve. The shipping industry has been grappling with a prolonged downturn brought about by overcapacity in a faltering global economy, but Hapag Chief Executive Rolf Habben Jansen pointed to signs of upward momentum. "We expect some market improvement in 2017, but our success will largely depend on our ability to achieve more sustainable freight rates," he said.

Marcia Kull (Photo: Torqeedo)

Kull Named President of Torqeedo Group

Marcia Kull has been named President of Torqeedo Group, Inc., and will direct global sales and strategy for the electric and hybrid marine propulsion systems manufacturer. Kull will oversee Torqeedo’s growth activities in the Americas, EMEA and Asia-Pacific regions. The newly created position is an expansion of the current management team. She will assume her new role on May 1, 2017. Kull joins Torqeedo from Volvo Penta of the Americas, where she was most recently Vice President, Marine Sales.

Commandant of the Coast Guard, Admiral Paul Zukunft, stands with the first Ancient Tridents, Rear Admiral Linda Fagan and Master Chief Petty Officer Richard “Shane” Hooker during the Ancient Trident Ceremony held at the Alexander Hamilton Custom House, March 23, 2017. (U.S. Coast Guard Photo by Frank Iannazzo-Simmons)

First Coast Guard Ancient Tridents Named

U.S. Coast Guard leaders and guests joined together Thursday to recognize Rear Admiral Linda Fagan and  Master Chief Petty Officer Richard "Shane" Hooker, the first Ancient Tridents, at the Ancient Trident Ceremony held at the Alexander Hamilton Custom House. "It's a proud day for the marine safety community as the Ancient Tridents Gold and Silver joins the lineage of the Ancients," said Rear Admiral Linda Fagan, the deputy commandant for operations, policy and capabilities. Among the distinguished guests in attendance were Commandant of the Coast Guard…

© Federico Rostagno / Adobe Stock

Shipping Confidence Steady despite Industry, Political Pressures

Shipping confidence held steady in the three months to end-February 2017, according to the latest Shipping Confidence Survey from international accountant and shipping adviser Moore Stephens. In February 2017, the average confidence level expressed by respondents was 5.6 out of 10, unchanged from the previous survey in November 2016 and equal to the highest rating since August 2015. Owners were the only main category to show an improved level of confidence, up from 5.4 to 5.6.

Photo: Crowley Maritime

Crowley, Penn Terminals Sign Multi-year Services Agreement

Crowley Maritime Corporation said it has signed a multi-year stevedoring and terminal services agreement with Penn Terminals in Eddystone, Pa., to accommodate the company’s weekly Northeast container shipping service to and from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Crowley, which has served the Northeast market from Petty Island in Pennsauken, N.J., continuously since 1983, will begin service from Penn Terminals January 1, 2018. With Crowley’s lease at Petty Island expiring at the end of this year…

Ken O’Hollaren (Photo: Port of Portland)

O’Hollaren Named Port of Portland Marine Marketing Director

The Port of Portland has hired Ken O’Hollaren to lead the Port of Portland’s marine marketing efforts, starting March 20, 2017. O’Hollaren previously served as the executive director of the Port of Longview and the Port of Port Angeles, and brings more than 25 years of experience in the maritime industry to the role. Additionally, O’Hollaren served as the chair of the Interstate Columbia River Improvement Project, responsible for the project to deepen the Columbia River shipping channel, and is a past chairman of the American Association of Port Authorities.

Capt. Bernard Cayer (Photo: MSRC)

MSRC Delivers PPU Presentation to Mexican Pilots

The Maritime Simulation Resource Centre (MSRC), a pilot simulation training and port feasibility studies facility, recently gave a presentation on Portable Pilot Units (PPUs) to the directors of all the Mexican Pilots Associations. The day-long workshop was given at the request of Captain ALT. Mario Alejandro Camacho Vidal, Secretario General del Sindicato Nacional de Pilotos de Puerto. Thirty marine pilots from across Mexico received detailed information on how PPUs operate and…

Photo: Shell Marine

Shell Marine Secures IMPA ACT Accreditation

Shell Marine said it has become the first company involved in the development, supply and support of marine lubricants to receive accreditation under the International Marine Purchasing Association’s IMPA ACT Sustainable Maritime Suppliers scheme. The preferred supplier status is conferred within the IMPA Responsible Supply Chain Management Initiative which seeks to improve the economic, social and environmental sustainability of international shipping and marine industries. “We…

Photo: Danos

Danos Posts Best Safety Record in Company History

Danos completed 2016 with a Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) of 0.11, the lowest since the company began tracking the data in 1979. The company credits this record to its comprehensive safety management system and the dedication of employees at every level. Danos’ comprehensive approach to safety begins with the hiring process, ensuring that all employees are tested, screened and selected based on strict criteria. Once onboard, new hires undergo a multilevel orientation program that provides both general and job-specific training and education.

Photo: Bahri

Bahri Meets with Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the US

Bahri’s CEO meets HRH Prince Abdullah bin Faisal bin Turki bin Abdullah Al Saud at the high-level gathering in the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, D.C. A senior-level Bahri delegation met with His Royal Highness Prince Abdullah bin Faisal bin Turki bin Abdullah Al Saud, Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the United States, at the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in the U.S. capital. The delegation, which is currently on an official visit to the U.S., was headed by Bahri’s CEO Eng. Ibrahim Al-Omar and other senior executives from the company.

Photo: UASC

Hapag-Lloyd Postpones UASC Takeover

German container shipper Hapag-Lloyd on Friday postponed the completion date for its takeover of United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) to May 31 from March 31, but said the deal, worth 7 to 8 billion euros ($7.52-8.60 billion), was not at risk. All merger clearances and regulatory approvals and all necessary banking approvals from Hapag's side have been obtained as have most banking approvals from Dubai-based UASC’s side, it said. Delays in finalising a deal set to create one of…

essDOCS Acquires eCertify

essDOCS extends its paperless trade offering, team and global reach with the acquisition of eCertify, the provider of electronic Certificates of Origin. essDOCS said it has acquired eCertify Pty Ltd, inventor of the electronic Certificate of Origin (eCO). eCertify provided the first eCO solution in 2008, and today its eCOs are used by 13,000+ companies and 120+ Chambers of Commerce in six countries. eCertify provides chambers of commerce, authorizing bodies, exporters and freight forwarders an online solution for application and issuance of eCOs…

Photo: CMA CGM

CMA CGM Supports Le Carburateur

CMA CGM, a leading worldwide shipping group, and le Carburateur, an incubator for small companies in the Marseille Northern Area in France, team up to stimulate entrepeneurship and job creation in the city. Under the guidance of Rodolphe Saadé, CMA CGM ‘s Chief Executive Officer, the company will offer all incubation costs within Le Carburateur to five newly created companies from the Marseille area. A jury, chaired by Rodolphe Saadé, CMA CGM’s CEO, will select five newly created companies related to the maritime…

Bella Dinh-Zarr (Photo: NTSB)

Dinh-Zarr to Serve as NTSB Acting Chairman

Christopher A. Hart’s term as Chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board concluded on schedule Wednesday and Vice Chairman Bella Dinh-Zarr will serve as the agency’s acting chairman. Hart will remain at the NTSB, applying his transportation safety expertise in the capacity of a board member. The NTSB has five board members, each nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate to serve five-year terms. By statute, a board member is designated by the President as Chairman and another as Vice Chairman for two-year terms. The Chairmanship requires separate Senate confirmation.

Maritime U.K.

Queen Mary 2 to Host Shanghai Trade Mission

Maritime U.K. and the Department of International Trade (DIT) will lead a three-day trade mission to Shanghai at the end of March to promote the U.K. as a center for global maritime business. Attended by senior industry and government leaders from both countries, including Shipping and Ports Minister, John Hayes MP, and Trade Minister, Mark Garnier MP, the mission has been timed to coincide with the RMS Queen Mary 2’s visit to Shanghai during its East Asian tour. The iconic vessel will be used to promote U.K.

Asian Ship Owners Meet in Japan

Held in Fukuoka, Japan, on March 19, 2017, the 29th Interim Meeting of the Asian Shipowners’ Association (ASA) Shipping Economics Review Committee (SERC)was attended by 21 delegates from ASA member associations of ASEAN, China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Japan and Korea. The U.S. economy is expected to pick up slightly this year, considering that manufacturing and investment will gain traction after a weak 2016. On the other hand, there is concern about how future economic policy and other policy initiatives under the Trump administration might affect not only the U.S.

Michael Braun (Photo: Xeneta)

Xeneta Hires Braun as Director, Value Engineering & Advisor Services

Xeneta, an ocean freight rate benchmarking and market intelligence platform, has appointed Michael Braun as Director, Value Engineering and Head of Xeneta Advisor department. Braun comes to Xeneta after 10 years with TIM Consult where he held the position of Project & Community Manager of Ocean Freight. "Xeneta is experiencing rapid growth and as the density of our ocean freight data increases there is a need to enhance our customer's knowledge of how to best use our data. Michael's…

Jamie Keogh (Photo: Faststream)

Faststream Appoints Keogh As Executive VP

Maritime recruitment company Faststream Recruitment Group has appointed Jamie Keogh as Executive Vice President of its Houston based North American headquarters. Keogh is a recruitment professional with 19 years' experience withn the sector. Keogh previously specialized in major project recruitment within oil and gas, power and petrochemicals and has experience working onsite with major operators and EPCs. Keogh will drive the development of Faststream’s established U.S. operations.

John Hotz (Photo: Horizon Shipbuilding)

Horizon Names Hotz VP, Business Development

Bayou La Batre, Ala. shipbuilder Horizon Shipbuilding, Inc. said it has hired John Hotz as Vice President of Business Development. Hotz brings to the role industry experience and a background in business development, having worked within the commercial and government marine sector throughout his entire 27-year career, including positions at several domestic and international boat builders. “John will focus on growing Horizon’s core competencies in the global marketplace and continue to build on the momentum we have been able to secure internationally,” said Travis R.

Semco Maritime and Skipavika signing (Photo: Semco Maritime)

Semco Enters Rig Cooperation with Skipavika Terminal

Semco Maritime and Skipavika enter into strategic agreement on service preparedness for all rigs at the port facility Skipavika Terminal near Bergen. The agreement also comprises an intention to develop the submarine base Olavsvern near Tromsø as a rig service center. Semco Maritime and Skipavika have entered into a strategic agreement about a service preparedness for rigs located at the port facility Skipavika Terminal near Bergen. The cooperation consists in Skipavika providing…

APL Expands Japan-US Service

APL has launched the Japan Express (JPX) service, a new weekly Trans-Pacific service which directly connects Japan with the U.S. West Coast.      Offering direct connectivity between Japan and the U.S., the JPX service will offer transit times as fast as a 10 days from Sendai to Los Angeles, said Jesper Stenbak, APL Senior Vice President of Trans-Pacific Trade.   The new JPX service will call the ports of Kobe, Nagoya, Tokyo, Sendai, Los Angeles and Oakland. The first sailing will commence from Kobe on April 5, 2017.

INTTRA Acquires Avantida

Ocean shipping electronic marketplace INTTRA announced it has acquired Avantida, provider of empty container management services for ocean carriers. Avantida is headquartered in Belgium and currently conducts business in seven European countries. Enhanced coordination of land and ocean container movements generates efficiencies and reduces costs, and INTTRA's entry into landside container logistics will provide additional value for existing and new customers. Avantida's core business - digitized…

Palau, Italy Join Forces for Maritime Seminar

Palau International Ship Registry (PISR) Flag Inspectors benefited from a seminar hosted between February 20 to 24 at Italian Coast Guard General Headquarters in Rome covering Port State Control, Safety of Navigation, Maritime Security, Prevention of Pollution (MARPOL) and Minimum training standards for seafarers (STCW Convention). The event was organized after a request by Palau International Ship Registry and was hosted by Rear Admiral Cristiano Aliperta, former Italian representative to the IMO and Head of 6th Department Safety of Navigation of the General Command.

The New APAC Forwarding Index

As Asian forwarding and logistics markets continue to show strong growth, a new Forwarding Index has been launched by two consultants to measure current demand and forward sentiment. The APAC Forwarding Index is being developed by freight journalist and consultant Mike King, and Cathy Roberson, an industry veteran who has been consulting on logistics markets for two decades. “Using the input gathered from respondents including shippers, forwarders, 3PL executives, agents, shipping lines and, of course, forwarders, we will build the APAC Forwarding Confidence Index,” said Roberson.

Lassen, Anderson Join OSM Board

Jens Lassen, former head of Carnival Maritime and Donald Anderson, former CEO of V. Ships Group, have joined OSM Maritime Group as members of the board. “Jens Lassen has extensive experience from the maritime industry and ship management in particular, from his years in senior management with companies like V. Ships, Stolt Nielsen, RCL and Carnival. Donald Anderson has more than 25 years in ship management, marine services, private equity and financial investments. Both Jens and Donald will play an important role in developing the strategy for OSM Maritime Group going forward…

MOL booth at Breakbulk CHINA 2016. Photo: Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd

MOL Promotes 'Project & Heavy Cargo'

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) plans to further promote "MOL Project & Heavy Cargo," its brand for plant/heavyweight cargo transport services. The MOL Group will expand "MOL Project & Heavy Cargo" activities in both Asia and Europe to enhance its initiatives on intermodal transport services for plant and heavyweight cargoes. The MOL Group has enhanced ties among its group companies to fuel further growth in its logistics business. In the upcoming events, four group companies - MOL, MOL Logistics Japan Co., Ltd., Utoc Corporation, and Mitsui O.S.K. Kinkai Ltd.

FMC Establishes Regulatory Reform Task Force

Acting Chairman of the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) Michael A. Khouri has designated the agency’s Managing Director, Karen V. Gregory, to serve as Regulatory Reform Officer. Gregory will stand up a Regulatory Reform Task Force that will work to identify burdensome, unnecessary and outdated directives and recommend how they should be remedied. "Relief from regulatory requirements that have outlived their usefulness is one of the easiest contributions the Federal Maritime Commission can make to increased efficiencies and creating economic benefits," said Acting Chairman Khouri.

Photo: Vietnam National Shipping Lines

Vinalines, Vinacomin Sign MoU

Vietnam National Shipping Lines (Vinalines) and Vietnam National Coal - Mineral Industries Group (Vinacomin - TKV) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for a strategic co-operation agreement, Viet Nam News reported. As per the agreement, Vinalines will provide services of container shipping, barges and bulk carriers as requested by Vinacomin to transport goods to local and international destinations. Vinalines and Vinacomin explore the possibility of cooperation in the field of maritime and logistics services provided by Vinalines such as forwarding services…

Photo: CMA CGM

CMA CGM to Continue its Development Strategy

In 2017, leveraging its global presence, dynamism, capacity of adaptation and innovation, and strategic actions implemented in 2016, CMA CGM should benefit from the sector’s improving environment, initiated in the 4th quarter of 2016. According to a company press release, the group will maintain its discipline in its unit expenses control, pursuing the execution of the Agility plan. CMA CGM does not anticipate any new ship orders on a short-term basis in order to maintain the still delicate balance between supply and demand.

© Stockninja / Adobe Stock

AAPA Sets 2nd Annual 'Ports Day' for April 4

The American Association of Port Authorities’ (AAPA) entire membership in North, South and Central America and the Caribbean will celebrate Western Hemisphere Ports Day on Tuesday, April 4. On this annual celebration, the association will recognize the industry’s role in supporting job creation and propelling the economies of the nations they serve across the Americas. “As the unified and recognized voice of the port industry in the Western Hemisphere, AAPA is excited to continue to share its story around the globe,” said Kurt Nagle, AAPA’s president and CEO.

Jim Koza (Photo: Lumitec)

Koza Joins Lumitec as Sales Director

Lumitec, designer and manufacturer of extreme environment LED lighting solutions, has appointed Jim Koza as Director of Sales at its R&D/manufacturing headquarters in Delray Beach, Fla. In his new position, Koza will work closely with Lumitec’s Marketing Department, Account Management, and the company President to further strengthen relationships with current customers and cultivate new growth opportunities. Koza brings to the role more than 20 years of sales experience in the manufacturing and distribution sectors.

Erik Hånell (Photo: Stena Bulk)

Stena Bulk Takes Control of Stena Weco

Stena Bulk has agreed to purchase the remaining 50 percent of the shares in Stena Weco from its partner WECO Shipping. Stena Weco will thus be wholly owned by Stena Bulk. Stena Weco’s head office will remain as it is today in Denmark in addition to the regional offices in Singapore, Dubai and Houston. Within the agreement between Stena Bulk and Weco, WECO Shipping will continue to run their controlled fleet in the Stena Weco logistic system. Stena Weco currently operates around 65 vessels, about half of which are owned and half chartered.

Yasmin Fortuny (Photo: Viega)

Viega Names Fortuny Technical Manager

Viega LLC has hired Yasmin Fortuny as its new technical manager for its shipbuilding and cruise business development division in the Florida, Puerto Rico, Bahamas and Caribbean regions. In this position, Fortuny is responsible for positioning Viega as the primary choice for marine applications within the cruise line, shipbuilding, mega-yacht, commercial-vessel and military markets. She is also responsible for promoting all of Viega’s marine-approved products, educating key end users and promotion and distribution across all marine channels.

File photo: ZIM

Glickman to Take over as ZIM CEO

Eli Glickman has been nominated by ZIM Integrated Shipping Services’ board of directors as the container carrier’s new president and CEO. Glickman will assume the role July 1, replacing current CEO Rafi Danieli, who last year advised that he would be stepping down. Danieli led ZIM as CEO for the past eight years, and before this held various positions at ZIM, including CFO and deputy CEO. “It has been a privilege to lead ZIM during the most difficult times the industry has ever faced,” Danieli said.

Michael Hansen (Photo: Hempel)

Hansen Joins Hempel as CCO

Hempel has appointed Michael Hansen as its new executive vice president and chief commercial officer (CCO). He will join the coatings manufacturer’s executive management board on 1 May, reporting directly to group president and chief executive officer (CEO), Henrik Andersen. Hansen joins Hempel after 19 years with Maersk, where he most recently held the position of vice president and global head of sales in Maersk Line. Based in Hempel’s headquarters in Denmark, Hansen will cooperate with his colleagues across the world and across Hempel’s different coating segments: protective…

Espen Thomassen (Photo: Global Maritime)

Global Maritime Promotes Thomassen

Marine, offshore and engineering consultancy Global Maritime Consultancy & Engineering has appointed Espen Thomassen as Regional Manager for the Americas. Thomassen has been tasked with growing Global Maritime’s business throughout the region, which, in addition to Houston, includes offices in Brazil and Canada. He will also lead Global Maritime’s involvement in providing Sub Chapter M compliance services to inland waterways towing vessels throughout the US. Sub Chapter M represents new U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) standards on the inspection, standards and safety policies of towing vessels.

Oscar Obregon (Photo: Dan-Bunkering)

Dan-Bunkering Promotes Obregon

Dan-Bunkering (America) Inc. has announced the relocation as per March 1, 2017 of Oscar Obregon from Dan-Bunkering in Copenhagen where he was initially employed as Bunker Trader back in 2012. In connection with his relocation to Houston, TX,Obregon has moreover been promoted to Development Manager, Mexico & Central America. Oscar is originally of Mexican extraction making it an obvious choice to have Obregon focusing on maintaining and creating new business opportunities within this region.

Photo: SM KLC

SM Line Launches New Shipping Services

South Korea's new container carrier, SM Line, which is built mainly on the remains of collapsed Hanjin Shipping, plans to kick off operations with as many as nine routes this year. According to Yonhap,  it will begin its services to Thailand, Vietnam, Japan and other regions with a fleet of 12 container ships. The carrier then wants to grow to 41 ships on 25 routes over the next five years. Late last year, SM Group, which owns South Korea's No. 2 bulk carrier Korea Line Corp., acquired now-defunct Hanjin Shipping Co.'s U.S.-Asia route and other assets for 37 billion won (US$32 million).

Photo: Chidambaranar

Chidambaranar Port Trust Celebrates Safety Week

46th Safety Week Celebration was inaugurated in V.O. Chidambaranar Port. The Safety Week Celebration for the year 2017 commenced with the flagging off of safety procession by U. Rajendran, Traffic Manager, V.O.Chidambaranar Port Trust. A huge gathering of Officers & Employees of the Port, Port Users & Stakeholders participated in the procession from V.O.C Square to the Multipurpose Hall at Port. In the Inaugural Function at Multipurpose Hall, S. Natarajan, Deputy Chairman V.O. Chidambaranar Port Trust, unfurled the Safety Flag and administered the Safety Pledge.

File photo: A.P. Moller - Maersk

IBM, Maersk in Blockchain Tie-up for Shipping Industry

IBM and Danish transport company Maersk said they were working together to digitize, manage, and track shipping transactions using blockchain technology. The technology, which powers the digital currency bitcoin, enables data sharing across a network of individual computers. It has gained worldwide popularity due to its usefulness in recording and keeping track of assets or transactions across all industries. The blockchain solution being built by the two companies is expected to be made available to the ocean shipping industry later this year…

Marine News and Maritime Logistics Professional editor Joseph Keefe

Marine Link's Joe Keefe Sounds off on Oregon Public Broadcasting

Marine News and Maritime Logistics Professional editor Joseph Keefe last week spent 10 minutes with Oregon Public Broadcasting to discuss the fate and the future of Oregon's only deep water port. Listen in to find out more. As ICTSI Oregon, Inc. and the Port of Portland mutually agreed to terminate a 25-year lease agreement to operate the container facility at the Port’s Terminal 6, the agreement allows ICTSI Oregon to be relieved of its long-term lease obligations effective March 31, 2017, pending approval by the Port Commission.

Dr. Toshiyuki Shigemi (Photo: ClassNK)

Shigemi Named Executive VP at ClassNK

Dr. Toshiyuki Shigemi has been appointed as Executive Vice President as well as Executive Director of ClassNK, effective March 7, 2016. Yasushi Nakamura has stepped down as Senior Executive Vice President, and has been appointed as an Advisor to the Society. Dr. Shigemi joined ClassNK in 1981. After a career including roles in plan approval, ClassNK’s research institute, and on-site surveys, he took up the position of General Manager of the Development Department in 2008, where he was responsible for overseeing ClassNK’s rule development activities for over one decade…

Pics: North Adriatic Ports Association

Koper Took Over the Presidency of NAPA

At the assembly of  North Adriatic Ports Association (NAPA) the port of Koper, Dragomir Matić, president of Luka Koper took the half-year presidency of the NAPA association. As emphasized at the meeting of representatives of the ports, it is crucial that all ports continue investing in new facilities and strengthen the market position of the entire Adriatic transport route. Data for 2016 shows that in general the throughput in north Adriatic is increasing and that the mission of the association is being realized through the acquisition of trade flows…

Photo: Oman Shipping Company

Oman Shipping to Acquire 10 Tankers

Omani government-owned Oman Shipping Company (OSC) has secured USD 227 million in debt to finance the acquisition of ten tankers, Reuters said citing France-based Societe Generale. The new medium range tankers are chartered to Shell Tankers Singapore for seven years. Societe Generale acted as sole arranger and sole underwriter for the landmark transaction, which involved a combination of export credit agency (ECA) and commercial financing. Seven of the 10 vessels were covered by Korea’s export credit agency, K-Sure.

Steve Roth, President of Seaspan Ferries Corporation (SFC) (Photo: Seaspan)

Seaspan Makes Leadership Moves

Steve Roth has been promoted to President of Seaspan Ferries Corporation (SFC). In this position, Steve will continue to have the primary accountability for the overall performance of the SFC business unit, including management of day-to-day operations of SFC, as well as the short and long-term strategic planning processes, including setting and fulfilling revenue and profitability targets and maintaining relationships with all stakeholders. He is also responsible for ensuring that customer service expectations are met or exceeded while ensuring the safe operation of SFC’s vessels…

Pics: DVB Bank

Shipping Woes: DVB Bank Posts Loss

Shipping Financier DVB Bank reported a consolidated net loss before taxes of EUR 135.3 million ($142.4 miln) for 2016 (previous year: consolidated net income of EUR 46.1 million). Since DVB Bank SE, the parent company of the DVB Bank Group, did not generate a net retained profit during the financial year, regretfully no dividends will be paid. Due to the persistent downturn in numerous segments of the shipping industry and an ongoing challenging environment for the offshore industry caused by low oil prices…

Inland Marine Service Appoints Business Development Coordinator

Inland Marine Service has announced its recent hire of Lori Johnson, who will join the IMS team as Business Development Coordinator. The announcement was made by Dave Hammond, President of Inland Marine Service. Johnson  will be based out of the New Orleans office, building client relationships and handling the needs of its customers. With 15 years of experience in the gas and oilfield industry, she began her career in business development and has excelled over the years as a sales manager/business developer.

Mike Macleod  (Photo: OEM Group)

Macleod Joins OEM Group as Financial Director

OEM Group said it has named Mike Macleod as its new finance director as part of the company’s growth strategy which aims to see its turnover increase by 25 percent to £3 million in the next 12 months. With more than six years’ experience working at director level, Macleod has joined the Aberdeen-headquartered marine and oil and gas services firm following 10 years at the oilfield services company Uniconn Group. Macleod has an Honors Degree in Law and Management from the Robert Gordon University.

Photo:  d’Amico ​Società di Navigazione SpA

d’Amico Delays Delivery of LR1 Tankers

Tanker shipping company d’Amico Tankers agreed with Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co.Ltd. – South Korea to postpone the delivery of its first newbuilding LR1 (Long Range – 75,000 dwt)from April 2017 to October 2017. This agreement follows a specific request of an oil major and a key customer of the Company, which will take the vessel on a 18 month TC contract upon her delivery from Hyundai Vinashin Shipyard Co. Ltd. – Vietnam. At the same time, the estimated delivery dates of the remaining 5 LR1s under construction at Hyundai Vinashin Shipyard Co. Ltd.

Memorial Fund Set Up for Families of Lost Fishing Crew

Joining members of the maritime community to assist families of the six crew members of the FV Destination that went missing in the Bering Sea on February 11, 2017, Peoples Bank is now collecting donations for the families of the missing crew members. Donations to the F/V Destination Memorial Fund can be made at all Peoples Bank locations throughout Western Washington, and Peoples Bank, a long-time banking partner for the North Pacific Fleet, will not take any fees associated with the contributions made to this fund.

Sean Hatherley (Photo: Navico)

Navico's Hatherley Joins NMEA Board

Sean Hatherley, director of sales for Navico Americas, has been named to the board of directors of the National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA). NMEA board members are appointed to a three-year term where they work together to create and promote NMEA strategies and programs. Hatherley has an electronics engineering degree and an extensive background in marine electronics sales and support.

Andreas Chrysikos (Photo: Glander International Bunkering)

Chrysikos Joins Glander International Bunkering

Marine fuel and lubricant trading and brokering firm Glander International Bunkering (GIB) has hired Andreas Chrysikos as Sales Manager in the Geneva office. The role of Sales Manager is a new addition to GIB’s Geneva office and has been added to reinforce its trading floor in line with increased demand. Chrysikos previously worked for a shipping company in his native country Greece for over 10 years.

Panos Kirnidis, Chief Executive, Palau International Ship Registry, in his new European Head Office in Piraeus, Greece. (Photo: PISR)

Palau Ship Registry Opens Piraeus HQ

The Palau International Ship Registry (PISR) has opened a new head office in Piraeus, Greece. Panos Kirnidis, CEO of PISR, said, “We have spent time finding and employing people around the shipping world who add value to our services and come with a sense of dedication we demand. During the years of our operations we have come into contact with many professionals whose skills we now use for our clients. We have more than 30 Deputy Registrars worldwide and if needed, we can source surveyors, engineers and legal experts to handle any issue that arises for ship owners and managers.

Image: C-Job

C-Job to Open Rotterdam Office

Naval architecture and engineering firm C-Job will open new office facilities in Rotterdam, operational from March 1, 2017. The new office, which the company said will open in response to growing market demands as well as to attract new employees from a larger geographical area, is C-Job’s third, after the head office in Hoofddorp and the branch office in Joure. “One of the main reasons for establishing an office in Rotterdam is to do with our clients,” said C-Job’s Design Director, Basjan Faber. “Rotterdam is home to a real maritime cluster of companies; all the major players are there.

Valsinni Barge (Photo: GP)

Gulf Petrochem Bolsters its European Bunkering Division

Gulf Petrochem Group (GP) has strengthened its bunker trading team in Europe with the appointment of Maxime Cramer to the group’s Rotterdam office . He joins a team of bunkering traders headed up by Chris Todd in Europe’s largest bunkering port, Rotterdam. Cramer  has in-depth knowledge and vast experience on both the customer and supply side of the business, having previously held trading positions with OW Bunker and Minerva Bunkers. The appointment of Cramer  will further bolster GP’s global bunkering division which is currently headed up by Chris Todd…

Rear Adm. Mat Winter, the U.S. Navy’s deputy program executive officer for the F-35 Lightning II, gave the commencement address at The Apprentice School graduation. Photo by John Whalen.

HII Graduates 184 Shipbuilders from Apprentice School

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) hosted commencement exercises on Saturday for 184 graduates of the company’s Apprentice School located at Newport News Shipbuilding. The ceremony was held at Liberty Baptist Church Worship Center in Hampton. Rear Adm. Mat Winter, the U.S. Navy’s deputy program executive officer for the F-35 Lightning II, reminded the company’s newest shipbuilders during his commencement address that everything they have achieved and will continue to achieve makes a difference.

Photo: APM Terminals

Mexico’s APM Terminals Open for Business

APM Terminals Lazaro Cardenas, Mexico’s largest semi-automated terminal, received its first official vessel call today with the arrival of the 9,600 TEU capacity Maersk Salalah on the AC2 Transpacific service from Asia. “This is a milestone as we add an additional operational terminal to our portfolio. A priority for us is to transition terminals under implementation into operation, and make them as efficient as possible to support our customers.” said Morten H. Engelstoft, CEO of APM Terminals.

INA Offshore platform. Photo: MOL Group

MOL Group Posts Almost USD 1 Billion Profit in 2016

MOL Group significantly outperformed its initial USD 2bn target for 2016 and delivered a clean  EBITDA of USD 2.15bn, which is only moderately down compared with the previous year. Upstream has shown great resilience to the deteriorating external environment. A further 17% decline in Brent prices and a 23% decline in realized gas prices were offset by higher production and cost discipline. As a result, EBITDA remained nearly flat at USD 675mn and the business generated over USD 250mn free cash flow equalling USD 7 per barrel of oil equivalent.

Leonard Returns to Port of Portland

Kristen Leonard will return to the Port of Portland (Oregon) on February 27, 2017 as chief public affairs officer, after leaving the port in November 2015 to serve as Governor Kate Brown’s chief of staff. During Leonard’s absence, Bobbi Stedman, the port’s chief human resources officer, also served as chief public affairs officer. Leonard joined the port to lead public affairs in July 2014. Previously, she advised clients on communications and public affairs. Leonard was the co-founder of C&E Systems…

Jeff Hubert (Photo: Brunswick Commercial & Government Products)

Brunswick Promotes Hubert to Sales Director

Brunswick Commercial & Government Products (BCGP) has promoted Jeff Hubert to director of sales, responsible for product development initiatives and worldwide business development. Hubert joined BCGP in 2016, and has been serving as the company's regional sales manager for the Eastern U.S. Recently retired as Lt. Colonel of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), Hubert is a graduate of the FBI National Academy with over 30 years of law enforcement experience. Originally from New York, Hubert began his public service career as a lifeguard in Daytona Beach, Fla.

Hanssons Increase Holding in NAT

A company owned by the Nordic American Tankers Limited  (NAT) Chairman & CEO, Herbjorn Hansson, and his son, Alexander, has purchased 75,000 NAT shares last week, adding to the position as one of the largest shareholders of NAT.   The share price was $7.96 per share.

Susanne Murphy (Photo: UK P&I Club)

UK P&I Club Appoints EMEA Regional Director

The UK P&I Club continues to strengthen its presence in Europe, Middle East and Africa Region, with the announcement that Susanne Murphy has been appointed EMEA Regional Director. Murphy joined Thomas Miller in 1995 following a Master’s degree in Marine Law. Murphy has extensive experience in the region; she was Syndicate Manager for LS2 for a number of years and worked particularly closely with the Club’s German Members. Murphy moved into the Senior Management team of the UK Defence Club in 2009 and is Deputy Club Manager…

Photo: Qatar Navigation (Milaha)

Milaha Profit Down for 2016

Qatar Navigation (Milaha), a maritime and logistics conglomerate based in Qatar, has reported a net profit of $195 million for the year ended December 31, 2016 compared to $300 million reported the previous year. The fall in the profit was mainly as a result of lower revenue from our Port Services unit, which was affected by a drop in storage and general/bulk cargo revenue, and rate pressure in our Container Shipping unit, which still managed to grow its market share and volumes. Milaha said its operating profit hit QR555 million compared to QR855 million reported the previous year.

An LNG vessel being built at Hyundai Heavy Industries in Korea. Photo Credit: HHI

Hyundai Heavy Union on Path to Strike

The labor unions of Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) downed tools in their first full strike since 1994, in protest to a sweeping restructuring plan that includes spinoff all non-shipbuilding operations as well as shutdown of a dock in Gunsan in southern coastal region. According to Yonhap News Agency reports the other reason for the industrial strike was failed wage negotiations. Although 15,000 union members were invited to take part in the eight-hour strike, only ten percent of workers participated in it. The labor unions’ employees started a strike for eight hours from 8 a.m.

One of the world's largest Self-Elevating Platform vessels, the Seajacks Scylla, owned and operated by Seajacks. Photo: Seajacks Ltd

MOL to Invest in Seajacks International

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines is investing in self-elevating platform vessel operator Seajacks International Limited (Seajacks) to move into offshore business following FPSO, FSRU, Shuttle Tanker, and Subsea Support Vessel. MOL has announced a plan to acquire a 5% share in Seajacks, which owns and operates five Self-Elevating Platform vessels, from Marubeni Corporation. This is a new offshore business for MOL, following FPSO, FSRU, shuttle tanker, and subsea support vessel. It is also the…

Robert A. Socha (Photo: VT Halter Marine)

VT Halter Marine Names Socha Senior VP

U.S. shipbuilder VT Halter Marine, Inc., a subsidiary of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), has appointed Robert A. Socha as Senior Vice President of Business Development and Estimating, effective January 30, 2017. In his role, Socha is responsible for overall management and leadership of the company’s business development and estimating departments. He will work closely with other corporate functions, including departments of engineering, production control, production…

Darryl D. Berger is sworn in on February 23, 2017, at the monthly meeting of the Board of Commissioners of the Port of New Orleans. (Photo: Port of New Orleans)

Berger Joins Port of New Orleans Board

Gov. John Bel Edwards appointed Darryl D. Berger to the Board of Commissioners of the Port of New Orleans. Berger, who was sworn in during today’s monthly Board meeting, will serve a five-year term, succeeding Scott Cooper, one of four Orleans Parish representatives on the seven-member regional Board. Berger is President of The Berger Company Inc., which he founded in 1972 and is based in New Orleans. An investor, developer and financier of real estate, Berger is particularly active as a leading developer in downtown New Orleans…

New Sat Comms Expert for the Greek and Cypriot Markets

Marlink has signed an agreement to enter into a joint venture with the satellite connectivity business of Greece and Cyprus based TNL Group, enabling it to launch a brand new maritime satellite communications expert, Marlink CG. Delivering a wide portfolio of innovative Marlink VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) services, Inmarsat FleetXpress, Inmarsat/Iridium MSS (Mobile Satellite Services) and integrated business critical solutions for customers in Southern Europe, Marlink CG will operate from offices in Greece and Cyprus…

Photo: Damen Shipyards Group

Damen Shiprepair Cuts 150 Jobs

Damen Shiprepair & Conversion (DSC) plans to lay off around 150 workers as part of its reorganisation program at three Dutch yards within its group. All employees at the three locations — Damen Shiprepair Rotterdam (DSR), Damen Shiprepair Van Brink (DSVB) and Damen Shiprepair Vlissingen (DSVl) — have been informed, along with the workers' council and trade unions. It is the intention of DSC to complete the reorganization before summer 2017. Making matters worse, market expectations for the short and medium term are not positive.

Photo: APM Terminals

APM Terminals Boosts Investment in Port Elizabeth

APM Terminals has significantly increased its previously announced USD $70 million investment plans for the APM Terminals Port Elizabeth facility, and now plans an investment total of USD $200 million. This figure includes ordering four next-generation Ship-To-Shore (STS) cranes to handle ultra-large container ships (ULCS) at North America’s second-busiest port complex. These vessels are expected to start calling the port right after the heightening of the Bayonne Bridge is completed later this year.

Mistry Resigns as a Director of Bumi Armada

Malaysia-based international offshore energy facilities and services provider Bumi Armada Berhad  has announced that its Non-Executive and Non-Independent Director, Shapoorji Pallonji Mistry, has resigned from the Board of Directors of the Group. Mistry joined the Board of Bumi Armada in October 2014. Mistry is the Chairman of the Shapoorji Pallonji group, a conglomerate involved in construction, real estate, infrastructure and renewable energy.

Kellye Walker (Photo: HII)

HII’s Walker Elected to Women’s Leadership Institute

Kellye Walker, Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) executive vice president and general counsel, was inducted into the DirectWomen’s 2017 Board Institute class. Walker is one of 20 elite women lawyers to be welcomed into this year’s class. The 2017 DirectWomen class is composed of general counsels of Fortune 500 companies, partners at top law firms, and other senior executives and advisers. DirectWomen identifies leading women lawyers from around the country who are able to provide the experience…

Melanie A. Leney (Photo: Montgomery McCracken)

Leney Elected to Partner at Montgomery McCracken

Melanie A. Leney has been elected to Montgomery McCracken’s partnership. Previously an associate with the firm, Leney is located in the firm’s Cherry Hill office and focuses her practice on complex commercial litigation at the trial and appellate levels, with an emphasis in maritime and transportation, employment litigation, products liability, personal injury, government investigations, and compliance and regulatory issues. She has also represented clients pro bono in civil rights and Federal Tort Claim Act litigation through the U.S.

"K” Line (India) Shipping Joins INSA

“K” Line (India) Shipping Private Ltd (KLISP), affiliated company of Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd., joined Indian National Shipowner’s  Association(INSA) at the end of January 2017. KLISP was established in 2014 and actively participates in Indian Coastal Trade as well as International Trade business as an Indian Shipping company. In the same year, KLISP successfully entered into a long-term CVC contract with an Indian Charterer. From December 2016, KLISP acquired ownership of an Indian flag vessel…

Miliaras tapped for Carnival Maritime Post

Minas Miliaras has taken on the role of Vice President Fleet Cruise Execution at Carnival Maritime, the Marine Service Unit of the Costa Group (AIDA, Costa) in Hamburg. Minas will head the fleet teams and the maintenance development team for all AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises and Costa Asia ships. He will be responsible for the fleet management of the 26 vessels according to efficiency and sustainability targets of Carnival Maritime. This includes technical management, improvement of repair efficiency…

Vanta Coda (Photo: Duluth Seaway Port)

Duluth Port Exec Director Receives Distinguished Service Transportation Award

In recognition for his leadership in the freight transportation and logistics field and contributions to leadership, mentorship and education of future leaders in private sector freight transportation, the Center for Transportation Studies (CTS) presented its 2017 William K. Smith Distinguished Service Award to Vanta Coda, executive director of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority. The award was presented at the CTS annual meeting and awards luncheon on Feb. 15, in the McNamara Alumni Center on the University of Minnesota campus.

Troy Container Line Announces FCL Managerial Promotion

Troy Container Line Ltd., one of American-owned NVOCCs, has announced  the promotion of Leeanne O'Reilly  to FCL Export Manager. With the FCL’s ongoing expansion, the elevation of Leeanne into this vital leadership role is a move seen as essential by the company to not only sustain but also advance the tailored and comprehensive customer service that has become a hallmark of Troy Container Line. In her new role, O’Reilly will be second in command for FCL Exports, working closely with clients…

Tony Bon (Photo: Samson)

Tony Bon: From Yarn Handler to CEO

January of 2017 saw the retirement of one of the veterans of the Samson family. Tony Bon, CEO through 2015 retired as of December 31, 2016. Bon shares his impressions of the time he’s been with Samson and the high points of both the company and the industry it serves. In the Navy they have an expression to describe a captain that moves up through the ranks: “He came up through the hawse pipes.” Bon’s journey to the corner office at Samson is a similar story. In 1974, after leaving Berklee College of Music in Boston, Bon needed a job.

“The Minister of Transport, Communications and Works of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr Marios Demetriades, welcomes the newly appointed Sales Executive in Germany, Mr Christian Bahr” (Photo: Cyprus)

Cyprus Appoints German Sales Executive

The Cyprus Department of Merchant Shipping has announced the appointment of Christian Bahr as its sales executive in Germany. Based in Hamburg, Bahr will be responsible for communicating the competitive advantages of the Cyprus flag and maritime cluster to the German market. With an economic background and extensive experience in the funds management sector and shipping investments, Mr. Bahr has spent 17 years in the shipping industry. With the full support of the Department of Merchant Shipping…

Commercial Sea Training Resumes for USMMA Cadets

The United States Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) has announced that Sea Year training for USMMA Midshipmen will resume on three commercial carriers beginning in March 2017. The reinstatement of the program follows the implementation of comprehensive new policies, including a zero tolerance policy for sexual assault and sexual harassment to ensure that the Academy’s standards for behavior, leadership and integrity are upheld. “I commend the maritime industry’s efforts to combat sexual assault…