Titan Marine Services Keeps Vessels in Ship Shape
Produced by Wayne Masciotro
Titan Marine Engineering is a service provider for the marine, shipping and industry in New Zealand.
The company works with some off the biggest on- and off-shore clients operating today, such as Maersk, P & O, WOSL, Sanfords and Fullers Group—which is the main ferry operator in Auckland. While the company’s services are both vast and deep, its main focus is repair and maintenance of majestic superyachts, utilizing a massive 80 meter, 1,500 ton slipway to service these luxury vessels.
According to Project Manager Anthony Bridge, Titan’s competitive advantage is its in-house machining and fabrication.
“We've just completed a $3.5 million re-fit on a 50 meter superyacht,” he said. “We completed major corrosion repairs to both hull and superstructure as well as repairing/replacing systems on the vessel.”
The company also works on the Fullers Group ferry vessels, an essential part of the transportation infrastructure in New Zealand.
“We are proud of our very quick repair turnaround on the ferry vessels. Whenever there is a breakdown it can impact on Auckland’s transport and a timely repair is essential. Breakdowns are not scheduled and we need to be prepared to make repairs any time of day or night,” he explained. “We have a full team of quality tradesmen available who are able to meet those demands.”
And while this is the company’s focus, Titan Marine Engineering can handle all areas of repair or alteration.
“We are able to qualify for machining and fabrication for all marine classes,” Bridge said.
They take a unique, tailored approach to each individual job, making them a preferred contractor across marine industry.
“Each job and client is oriented depending on the vessel and its ability to maintain classification,” Bridge explained. According to him, this approach means ensuring staff is always properly trained.
“For example,” he said, “One of the tasks on the last yacht on the slipway was to replace a damaged rudder. This needed a welding procedure for mild to stainless steel between the rudder stock and bolting flange. We had to qualify a tradesman for class in this procedure which cost approximately $7,000, with the job itself only costing about $10,000. That is an example of the many challenges to meet various industry demands, Although every job has a tailored aspect to the various tasks involved, the basic principles of planning and application remain.
The Industry has a high level of risk of injury and Titan Marine retains the highest (Tertiary) level of ACC’s (NZ’s government operated workplace insurer) Workplace Safety Management Program, which requires a proactive approach to health & safety. Training is conducted for all aspects of the company’s many tasks including confined space, BA rescue, working from heights, etc. Ensuring worker safety is something Titan Marine is focused on, since the nature of work the company is performing is changing. It is important to remain on top of it as it is our staff which is our most important asset and their safety is our first priority.
“The trend for superyachts coming to the south pacific is that there are larger yachts visiting,’” Bridge said. “With the yachts being bigger the scope of work is changing in volume on each job. Nothing is really changing in terms of the type of work, it's just the scale is becoming larger.”
With the increasing scope and volume of work, Titan Marine is always working to ensure its quality never drops. One new area of focus for the company is vessel security—an aspect of the business that’s becoming in high-demand with superyachts owners, guests and crews requiring a high level of security and privacy.
“We'll be evolving that over the next year, tightening up on security and vessel access,” Bridge said. “As they're getting bigger, security demands are growing and so is our need to accommodate this area. Our management team has been introducing more focus groups to tackle different areas of the company, From company vision and direction to meeting client needs. It's just breaking it up into smaller groups and dealing with each task or issue on a more individualistic basis.”
Titan Marine is finding great success with its increased workload. They have had some major clients return after using alternative service providers, Bridge said ‘this is testament to the quality of work and the timely manner in which we are able to provide’. He isn’t concerned with the increased workload, though he noted being adaptable is a big part of any business.
“The game changes so quickly,” he said. “We find a problem and that could lead to into many others. We constantly find that you can haul a vessel and its scope of work is never exactly as planned. It's really hard to gauge or schedule the work ahead. I guess that is what makes this industry interesting”
That doesn’t stop Titan, though.
“We're always ensuring that the quality of work expected and timelines are met,” Bridge said. “That's our main focus: delivering quality workmanship on time.”
Bridge attributes the company’s successes to its employees, also noting of the geographical position of New Zealand, the lifestyles that come with it and the advantage it gives them.
“It's the people, really,” he said. “We're quite lucky here in Auckland that most people that are under our employment are marine focused in their lifestyle as well. That's a big help for us.”
At more than 20 years old, Titan is still focused on providing high-quality service, on time, to its growing list of major clients.