“It will start with areas where we don’t compete directly, and where we see value in cooperation. Are you big enough to optimize on your own? Today maybe, but in the future…?” That was the comment from Wärtsilä marine solutions president Roger Holm to NauticExpo e-magazine in January when he explained his vision for a smart marine ecosystem—find it here.
At a special SMM seminar in early September in Hamburg, the Finnish technology giant announced cooperation agreements that advance this vision and will have a global impact. Firstly, Wärtsilä partnered with fellow technology companies Winterthur Gas & Diesel (WinGD) and Gaztransport & Technigaz (GTT) to make LNG fuel a truly viable option for ship owners and operators by optimizing the integration of engines, LNG tanks, the fuel supply, and control systems. The aim is to deliver a streamlined approach to achieving environmental legislation compliance.
Secondly, the three companies announced they had partnered with four others in a consortium that will not only develop new levels of performance and environmental efficiency for container vessels, but an entirely new business model for the container sector.
Led by Dubai-based Zaitoun Green Shipping (ZGS), the consortium’s goals are very much in line with Wärtsilä’s smart marine ecosystem vision. The other members are cargo systems giant MacGregor Finland, project management specialist Carina Solutions (C4), and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Marine Machinery & Equipment (MHI-MME).
“Competitors—we’ll have to work with them,” Roger Holm told NauticExpo e-magazine. “But I think it will take years. It’s a step-by-step approach.”