Anything but Standard: Damen Newbuild and Repair Group Targets Global Growth

By Eric Haun
Monday, October 28, 2013
Damen’s repair and conversion yard in Schiedam.

From a single newbuild and repair yard near Rotterdam in 1927, the family-owned Damen Shipbuilding group has expanded to 38 shipyards and related companies involved in new construction as well as repair and maintenance activities. Now with more than 8,000 employees and a presence in 34 countries, the Netherlands-based Damen group has become one of the world’s most successful shipbuilding businesses, thanks largely to its production methods and ever-expanding design portfolio.

When Kommer Damen began running the Damen company in 1969, he made changes to the company’s operations instantaneously. One of his first initiatives involved standardizing the construction of vessels based on modular building principles, a bedrock business principle that has driven the company’s growth for the last 40 years. Continuing its standardized mode of building today, Damen builds on spec and keeps stock of its most popular vessels, enabling buyers to obtain vessels in a matter of weeks, rather than months or years, with a competitive price tag, too.

Damen’s newbuilding activities presently includes a range of vessels in each of its niche markets, of which it delivers between 120-150 annually (more than 5,000 since 1969), including tugs, workboats, offshore support vessels, dredgers, navy and patrol craft, cargo ships, fast ferries, fishing vessels, barges and luxury yachts. Of Damen’s newbuilds, 22% are harbor services and shipping, 20% offshore and support, 20% security and patrol, 20% naval, 5% public transport, 8% yachts and 5% dredging.

The group’s annual turnover in 2012 was $2.3 billion, and the company projects between $2.4-2.6 billion for 2013. Newbuild commands the lion’s share (70%), with repair smaller (14%) but growing fast.  By region, Damen deliveries include 24% for the Netherlands, 33% for the rest of Europe, 11% the Americas, 13% Asia, 12% Africa and 7% Middle East.

Design Spotlight - The Axe Bow
A recent market changer is Damen’s Axe Bow concept. Attempting to improve seakeeping abilities and comfort of high-speed vessels, Damen’s Axe Bow has been in the works since the 1980s. Starting with the long-hulled “Enlarged Ship Concept,” Damen initially produced the Stan Patrol 4207 and 4708 in the 1990s. It wasn’t until the 2000s that the Axe Bow hull form was fully developed with the debut of “Sea Axe” patrol vessels and fast crew suppliers. Literally shaped like the head of an axe, the slender Axe Bow is designed to cut through seas at high speeds with reduced wave resistance. In addition to improving vessel operability, comfort and safety, Damen says the dramatic drag reduction cuts fuel usage by 20% and as a result also significantly reduces emissions.

Damen quickly incorporated the Sea Axe design into several of its market areas, producing builds from 19-67 meters in areas ranging from patrol vessels fast crew suppliers, even building a  “Twin Axe” catamaran. More than 100 vessels with the Sea Axe design have been sold since 2005, mostly for use offshore, with nearly 60 under construction at Damen yards globally.

Looking ahead, Damen plans to scale up in the following areas: offshore, harbor terminal and tugs, naval and patrol, dredging, defense and security, public transportation, government and naval, yachts and offshore energy.

Offshore
Damen admits the offshore newbuild sector is not a major contributor to its bottom line – for now. Damen’s offshore division has an annual turnover between $200-270 million, accounting for approximately 10% of its $2.3 billion total for the group in 2012. Damen’s first offshore vessel was a one-off supplier built in 1987, but the company’s offshore builds didn’t pick up until after the start of the new millennium when the company’s Brazilian partner Wilson Sons (see related story, page 54) inquired for the design of a platform supplier, which was built in 2007. This served as a turning point for the company, and Damen decided to increase its offshore building activity, keeping its basis in the Brazillian market. In 2010, Worldwide Supply placed an order for six new platform suppliers (two have already been delivered, while the remaining four are expected by the end of 2013, and an additional two are in production). Since 2007, Damen has received 50 orders in the offshore segment, including PSVs, cable layers, anchor handlers, seismic research vessels and oil spill response vessels.

Damen has capabilities for building offshore vessels in Holland, Vietnam, Romania, China and Brazil, with plans to expand, both in physical facilities and new design concepts.

“We are a big company, and we think the Offshore market is one of the niches where we can grow,” said Jan Van Os, Damen’s Offshore Director. “One of our goals is to become a key player in the offshore market.” He added, Damen is presently looking into other innovative offshore options that fit into the design capabilities and capacities of its yards for both short and long term, such as construction vessels, platform repair and maintenance vessels, arctic platform suppliers and cable laying vessels.

Harbor and Terminal Tugs
Damen is a leader in the design and build of harbor and terminal vessels, particularly its range of standard harbor tugs with bollard pull of up to 100 metric tons. Stock Damen terminal service vessels and tugs are available for operation nearly immediately upon order, perfectly epitomizing the benefits of Damen’s standardized building method and making the harbor and terminal sector Damen’s busiest. More than 80 Damen ASD tugs (Damen’s top harbor product) have been built since 2002. The Damen harbor portfolio includes a range of workboats for various tasks in ports and harbors. Work barges, skimmers, dregders, pilot boats, fire-fighting vessels, multi cats, survey vessels buoy tenders and security vessels are all offered by Damen, demonstrating the builder’s wide design and build capabilities.

Luxury Craft
Yachts make up 8% of Damen’s newbuild orders. It acquired Amels in the early 1990s and has expanded its yacht building capacities. In 2005, Damen introduced the Limited Editions concept, which comprises four models that allow customers to choose from stock builds and then choose paint, interior options and other features to create customized luxury vessels. Damen said its semicustom designs based on standardized building methods allow faster deliveries, top quality and higher resale values.

Naval and Patrol

Damen’s navy roots are deeply seeded in the company’s defense and security traditions. Damen has been the dedicated shipbuilder of the Royal Netherlands Navy for more than 50 years, having involvement in the design, engineering and construction of eight generations of combat and auxiliary vessels. Roughly 20% of Damen’s builds fall into the naval and security segment including inland, coastal and offshore patrol vessels; air defense and command frigates; landing personnel and vehicle craft; coast guard emergency rescue and multipurpose ships.

Repair
Damen Shiprepair and Conversion is a successful venture in its own right, contributing roughly $475 million of the group’s annual turnover. The business sector performs more than 1,500 repair jobs per year at its 16 repair yards throughout the world, approximately 50% of which comes from the offshore sector. The repair group has a focus on niche markets such as LNG, cruise and dredging for complex long-term projects, while many shorter-term general repair projects are completed as well to help keep the repair yards busy and profitable. Damen’s shiprepair services range from collision repair and engine damages to fire/water damages and rudder/tailshaft repair.

 

(As published in the October 2013 edition of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News - www.marinelink.com)

  • signature Damen ASD Tug

    signature Damen ASD Tug

  • The Axe Bow

    The Axe Bow

Maritime Reporter July 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Maritime Union of Australia Oppose China Trade Deal

The Maritime Union of Australia is willing to use its power over the country's ports to disrupt a new free trade deal with China, reports AAP.   The union movement’s

NOIA Applauds RI Offshore Wind Project

National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) president Randall Luthi issued a statement congratulating “steel in the water” for Deep Water Wind’s Block Island Wind Farm,

BTP Handles Millionth Container

Brazil’s newest container terminal hits a series of efficiency milestones   Brasil Terminal Portuário (BTP), Brazil’s newest container terminal in the Port of Santos,

Shipbuilding

Korean Shipyards in Troubled Water

Struggling with technology and a plunge in oil prices that has discouraged exploration, Korean vessel makers are racking up debt and could show billions of dollars in losses, reports Bloomberg.

ABS Grants AIP for Jensen’s LNG ATB Design

A Jensen Maritime-designed, liquefied natural gas (LNG)-bunkering articulated tug-barge (ATB) has been granted approval in principle (AIP) by classification society American Bureau of Shipping (ABS).

SENER Presents on History of Ship Design

The COMPIT annual edition took part this year from May 11-13 in Ulrichshusen, Germany, with the participation of SENER. This event is an International Conference

Ship Repair & Conversion

Korean Shipyards in Troubled Water

Struggling with technology and a plunge in oil prices that has discouraged exploration, Korean vessel makers are racking up debt and could show billions of dollars in losses, reports Bloomberg.

Sainty Marine Chairman Resigns

The chairman of Shenzhen-listed Sainty Marine, Wang Shuhua has delivered his resignation amid  the company's deteriorating financial situation, according to an exchange filing.

South Australia Seeks Shipbuilding Job Guarantees

The South Australian Government has outlined three key points on shipbuilding it wants addressed by the Commonwealth's Defence White Paper next month.   It wants

Workboats

ABS Grants AIP for Jensen’s LNG ATB Design

A Jensen Maritime-designed, liquefied natural gas (LNG)-bunkering articulated tug-barge (ATB) has been granted approval in principle (AIP) by classification society American Bureau of Shipping (ABS).

RI Offshore Project Boosts US Wind Entry

Rhode Island's Deepwater Wind will start installing the foundations for North America's first offshore wind farm on Monday, a milestone the company says could pave

Zamakona Builds Tuna Vessel for Echebastar

Zamakona Yards informs its Astilleros Zamakona shipyard will deliver new build EuskadiI Alai, the third tuna freezer vessel ordered by the Echebastar Group to

Vessels

Scottish Exporters Bullish on New Shipping Service

As the shipping operator BG Freight Line is set for a new freight service connecting the links, Scotland’s food and drink, chemical and manufacturing industries are looking for a boost.

ABS Grants AIP for Jensen’s LNG ATB Design

A Jensen Maritime-designed, liquefied natural gas (LNG)-bunkering articulated tug-barge (ATB) has been granted approval in principle (AIP) by classification society American Bureau of Shipping (ABS).

New Tanker Delivered to Ardmore Shipping

25,000 DWT IMO 2 product and chemical tanker ship, Ardmore Chinook, joins Ardmore fleet   Ardmore Shipping Corporation announced that its latest newbuild tanker vessel,

Yachts

Alia Launched the 41m Superyacht Rüya

Turkish shipyard Alia Yachts has launched the 41.29 metre full-displacement motor yacht Rüya. She is a tri-deck sub-500 gross tonne motoryacht that was built in

Captain Issued RMI’s First Unlimited Yacht License

Captain Roberto Beretta the first in the world to be issued this specific and highly-esteemed Master (Yachts) - Unlimited license by the Republic of the Marshall

EU Approves I-Tech Selektope

The antifouling biocide Selektope has been approved by the EU Standing Committee on Biocidal Products for EU-wide use from the 1st of January 2016   On the 8th of July,

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.4061 sec (2 req/sec)