Ocean Safety sees shift to rental contracts
UK safety and survival equipment supplier Ocean Safety both sells and rents a large range of SOLAS approved liferafts to the commercial maritime sector and in the past 30 months the company’s hire fleet has risen from 60 to 400.
Alistair Hackett, General Manager at Ocean Safety comments “Commercial operators are naturally very vigilant with regards to costs and cash flow, and they are increasingly appreciating the benefits of fixed budgets and service scheduling.”
An Ocean Safety hire contract includes fast-turnaround and regular servicing and service date management, for large and small fleets. With branches in Southampton, Plymouth, Glasgow and Aberdeen, they have great national coverage.
“We are particularly noticing the way the wind farm support industry has embraced the liferaft hire market,” adds Hackett. “They are also hiring from our lifejacket range too.”
He observes “The cost to maritime operators of safety equipment has significantly increased in recent decades in line with tightened regulations and all these additional efficiencies can make a large difference to overall costs. Margins are getting tighter and the hire solution resolves both operating and capital costs.”
Further benefits to the hire versus buy debate include the fact that a busy vessel operator doesn’t need to wait in dock for the servicing turnaround. Hire contracts enable equipment suppliers like Ocean Safety to provide ‘like for like’ replacements immediately reducing down time to zero.
Hackett believes that the ship operator sector is growing ever more savvy to the cost saving. “Overall, Ocean Safety still sells significantly more liferafts than it hires out, but that gap is closing.”
Ocean Safety is continuing to see North Sea operations increasing as the renewable energy sector grows. The company has won a number of hire contracts in this sector.
By Jake Frith
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