The Chief Executive of the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA), Hugh Williams, 59, has announced his intention to stand down at the end of 2012 after 10 years in post.
IMCA is the international trade association for offshore, marine and underwater engineering companies with about 850 members in over 60 countries all around the world. It focuses on offshore construction and marine operations mainly in support of offshore oil & gas, but also marine renewable energy, dredging and telecommunications cable laying. IMCA exists to help its contractor members deliver safe and efficient projects supported by other members up and down the supply chain. This is mainly achieved by publishing good practice guidelines and promoting their use as well as the awareness and recognition of them.
“Hugh’s decision to step down as Chief Executive is a great loss to everyone involved with IMCA, especially those on the IMCA Council and Overall Management Committee” said Andy Woolgar, Subsea 7, IMCA President. “Under his outstanding leadership during the last 10 years IMCA has delivered a considerable number of achievements. These include:
- Significantly increased recognition of IMCA around the world
- The use of existing good practice guidance has been maintained and around 150 new and updated guidelines have been published
- Increase in membership from 150 companies to around 850 members – with the ‘country count’ increasing dramatically too
- The worldwide spread of the association has been enhanced by creating two new geographic sections: Central & North America, and South America. The five sections now cover all the major global oil patches and allow members to meet to discuss global and local issues
- IMCA’s annual seminar already had a global recognition (or standing), which has continued to grow. It is supported by the safety and environment seminar which is now both annual and moves each year to a different location around the world
- New workgroups have been formed to address, for example: Contracts & Insurance, Security, and Renewable Energy
- The association is a supporting organisation for leading global events such as: the Offshore Technology Conference (Houston), Offshore Europe (Aberdeen), Oceanology International (London), Offshore South East Asia (Singapore), Middle East Workboats (Abu Dhabi) and Rio Oil & Gas (Rio de Janeiro)
- Global statistics published annually by IMCA show a marked reduction in the marine construction accident rate at the same time as a huge increase in man-hours reported by the expanding industry and membership – a demonstration of the benefits of the good practice
- To support the effort, the IMCA secretariat has grown from five to 23 specialist staff in the London office.
“Observers of the offshore industry know that the industry faces some substantial future challenges,” Andy Woolgar explains. “In areas like new technology, higher expectations, deepwater operations (down to over 3,000m), harsher seastates and colder climes, like the Arctic, the challenges have grown – and Hugh, and his team, have similarly extended their reach to ensure that member companies are kept fully informed on topics relevant to their safe and efficient operations in these new frontier regions. His will be difficult shoes to fill, however, we know with Hugh’s support and guidance we will find a new Chief Executive with the appropriate knowledge, industry and engineering background, enthusiasm, energy and networking skills to carry on the outstanding work achieved during Hugh’s tenure.”
“We have achieved a huge amount in my time with excellent support from my team”, said Hugh Williams. “It has been a most rewarding opportunity. But there remains much to do and we will be seeking internally, and externally, for a new Chief Executive to take IMCA forward and continue to deliver even more support to our members”.