A new level of mobility in marine services

A new level of mobility in marine services

The competition in marine services at the busiest spot in the Mediterranean area has led Wärtsilä Turkey to introduce a new level of mobility at the largest shipyard in the country.

Text: Çağan Orhon Photo: Wärtsilä
Wärtsilä marine service in Turkey: the world’s first mobile governor workshop

     
Situated at the crossroads of almost every major trade route since the very beginning of our civilization, it’s no surprise that Turkey today has become one of the most important hubs for the shipbuilding and repair industry in the Mediterranean area. Headquartered at the heart of the country’s major zone for shipbuilding, Wärtsilä in Turkey, Wärtsilä Enpa, is now expanding its marine services, introducing the world’s first mobile governor workshop.

Providing its services in three different locations in Turkey, namely Istanbul, Izmir and Gaziantep, Wärtsilä in Turkey has its head office and main workshop in Tuzla, Istanbul. Home to over 45 large and small shipyards with an unmatched level of density, the area accounts for 67 percent of the total ship repair activity in the country, according to the Turkish Shipbuilders’ Association. Another 23 percent is carried out in a recently developed shipbuilding zone in Yalova – half an hour from Tuzla- with 42 shipyards at the southern entrance of the Gulf of Izmir.

“Turkey is currently the best spot for shipowners in this area for their repairs not only because of its advantageous geographical position in the Mediterranean Sea, close to Suez Canal, but also because of the quality and cost of services,” says Arie Pijl, the Managing Director of Wärtsilä in Turkey.

Right place, right time

The volume of shipbuilding and repair activity in the country, however, is well below the record levels reached before the 2008 world economic crisis, as elsewhere in the world. Current levels of freight rates and oil prices are only nurturing further the fierce competition in the industry.

At the height of this competition, Wärtsilä Enpa and Besiktas Shipyard in Yalova have signed their first cooperative agreement in spring 2016. According to the agreement, Wärtsilä is now providing its marine services on-site at Besiktas Shipyard, including 4- and 2-stroke engine services, propulsion services, seals & bearings services and governor overhauls.

“We have sent one of our two propeller repair containers to Besiktas Shipyard and we can repair any propeller in the world” explains Pijl. “We have also placed the world’s first mobile governor workshop, including a governor test bench in it and we can serve all types of governors. So, the shipowner no longer needs to bring the propeller or the governor to our workshop, saving their precious time.”

Besiktas Shipyard is the largest shipyard in Turkey, with the longest dry dock in the country and the longest berth area. In 2015, it conducted repairs on 170 vessels, reaching the highest number of ships a single shipyard repaired that year.

“Our agreement with Wärtsilä steps us further in the competition, as we diversified the services we offer without any additional investment,” remarks Gündem Gümüşkaynak, the Marketing Manager of Besiktas Shipyard. “With Wärtsilä’s mobile propeller and governor workshops on our site, we are now able to offer a faster and a more efficient service to our customers. When they see that Wärtsilä is just near them in our shipyard, they are assured of the quality of services we offer.”

Wärtsilä’s Workshop Manager Cansu Tokat is the engineer behind the world’s first mobile governor workshop design.

    
Service at its best

Wärtsilä’s Workshop Manager Cansu Tokat is the engineer behind the world’s first mobile governor workshop design. “When I was working as an engineer on ships, we were brave sailors overcoming the most challenging overhauls onboard. But we never touched the governor,” he says to explain the high level of expertise, precision and the neat working conditions needed for governor overhaul, that they now can fully offer at their mobile workshop they designed from scratch.

“By offering our marine services right on the site where the ship is docked, we provide a relief on the time pressure on the dry dock, higher accessibility to our services, easier logistics and cost efficiency,” he adds.

While the current extent of services provided in the scope of the cooperative agreement between Wärtsilä Enpa and Besiktas Shipyard marks only the beginning, the business volume between them have already quadrupled since the agreement. In line with the demand coming from Besiktas Shipyard, Wärtsilä in Turkey is now working to provide on-site reconditioning or remanufacturing services for 2-stroke engine exhaust valves, starting from next year.

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