As a leading Norwegian technology company established in 1814, the Kongsberg Group can celebrate more than 200 years in the industry. Kongsberg Maritime, a subsidiary of the Kongsberg Group is a global marine systems provider. Kongsberg Maritime offer products and solutions that are suitable for on- and offshore, merchant marine, sub-sea, navy, coastal marine, aquaculture, training services and more.
For this weeks NBAS Talks Business Profile, we interviewed Henrik Dannstrøm, Country Manager at Kongsberg Maritime in Singapore. Henrik is responsible for the daily running of the Kongsberg Maritime Singapore office. The Singapore office consists of one of Kongsberg’s global IT centres and Kongsberg Digital (KDI).
Kongsberg Maritime in Singapore
The Kongsberg Maritime office in Singapore offers many services for local and global industry, including Technical Support Capability for customers worldwide. The office is supported by a professional team that works to provide innovative cradle-to-cradle solutions to relevant industries. They offer a variety of services, including Newbuilding Sales and Marketing, Project Delivery, Customer Support with local Field Service, Repair & Overhaul Workshop. In addition, Kongsberg Maritime offers customer training and the rental of specialized equipment.
“Kongsberg Maritime’s presence in Singapore includes our Kongsberg Digital (KDI) division, which focuses on selling and servicing next-generation software and digital solutions to our customers in maritime, oil and gas, and utility industries. KDI is integrated with our Kongsberg products and solutions, that offer technology solutions within industrial autonomy, smart data, augmented reality and other fields of applications,” Henrik says.
Besides, Kongsberg NorControl (KNC) has a separate entity in Singapore that provides vessel traffic service systems (VTS) to many port authorities. These systems work to ensure safe navigation and efficient port operation.
“Our Kongersberg NorControl is a world leader in port, offshore, coastal surveillance and e-Navigation systems for VTS, Port, Coastal and River Authorities. For instance, the Maritime Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) is using our vessel traffic management system for traffic monitoring and control,” Henrik adds.
Innovation taking place in Singapore
Kongsberg Maritime has offices located around the world. We asked Henrik about the company history in Singapore, and why they decided to open an office in Southeast Asia.
“Our office was established as Kongsberg Albatross Pte Ltd in 1987, and focused mainly on sales. In 2004, the name was changed to Kongsberg Maritime Singapore. Today, we have a diverse group of 18 nationalities making up our 231 employees in Singapore”.
He adds,” Singapore is a major maritime hub where we find many of our clients, such as ship owners, shipyards and ship management companies. Singapore’s business climate is generally great, considering the high level of transparency, well-functioning financial institutions and a reputable conflict resolution system. In Singapore, we can easily access a skilled local workforce, while we can also hire non-local employees when needed. Additionally, Singapore is a country that emphasizes innovation”.
Other NBAS Talks – Dualog: “Driving Transformation in the Maritime Industry”
COVID-19 accelerates digitalization
The COVID-19 outbreak posed a wide-ranging set of challenges for most sectors and companies around the world, including the maritime industry. We asked Henrik to share the consequences he experienced most troubling, and how the Kongsberg Maritime Singapore office is currently adapting to new routines and regulations, implemented during the pandemic.
“While Kongsberg Maritime is a global technology leader, we recognize the disruption the pandemic inflicted on our past working norms. In this unprecedented situation, we need to understand the medium and long-term effect on sustainability and customer support. This pandemic accelerated digital transformation, and Kongsberg Maritime has responded well to remote working regulations, and in terms of increased service support. The volatile oil prices, coupled with the pandemic has of course impacted our partners, suppliers and customers. We recognize that many countries are imposing lock down restrictions, or similar measurements affecting the transport and movement of goods and people, affecting specific personnel. Take for instance service engineers, and personnel working in specific industry crews. Luckily, there are parts of Asia that are currently easing restrictions, allowing for essential services to resume. Therefore, we continue to remain cautious and vigilant,” he says.
Facilitating efficient and safe operations in all conditions
Post Covid-19, we expect the market will continue to change and adapt towards the inclusion of more innovative solutions. We asked Henrik how he envisioned Kongsberg Maritime would position themselves, to keep ahead of the competition.
“We are known for providing leading technological solutions in our traditional business areas. Our competitiveness depends on facilitating efficient and safe operations, for and in all conditions. We already have a solid technology platform that we will continue to build on, while leveraging extra effort to make this platform even stronger. For Kongsberg Maritime, technological development and building strong lines of communication, will be essential to continue our work, and move beyond the contractual layer in supporting our customers. During a pandemic, the true definition of telematics is enhanced in the maritime industry, and it accelerates the adoption of telecommuting by our staff and customers using mobile, tablets and computers. Our adequacy in technology security has made it possible for us to share our progress, and report it to our customers, suppliers and amongst ourselves,” he says.
Investing in a sustainable future
Lastly, we asked Henrik which pitfalls Kongsberg Maritime will aim to steer clear from, in effort to succeed and comply with the new industry regulations being implemented.
“I am always eager to look back, take lesson and do better when talking about pitfalls. Nevertheless, an organisation needs to establish contingency and emergency plans, in maintaining the necessary communications with stakeholders, including the government. In 2015, our position was clarified through our new strategy ‘Technology for Global Challenges’. Our business strategy provides the direction and principles that form the basis of our future success. Today, we use the UN sustainable development goals in designing a blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. This allows us to invest in enablers, such as technology for decarbonization and subsea exploration. Additionally, we are also looking at improving our partner ecosystem, with both suppliers and customers who are investing in the future generation,” Henrik ends.
A key theme for NBAS going forward is innovation and technology, especially leading up to the Singapore Norway Innovation Conference (SNIC) on September 29. In the next upcoming months, we will publish a series of inspirational and educational articles profiling NBAS-members across all sectors in Singapore.
About Kongsberg Maritime
Kongsberg Maritime is a global marine technology company providing innovative and reliable ‘Full Picture’ technology solutions for all marine industry sectors including merchant, offshore, cruise, subsea and naval. Headquartered in Kongsberg, Norway, Kongsberg Maritime has manufacturing, sales and service facilities in 34 countries. Kongsberg Maritime solutions cover all aspects of marine automation, safety, manoeuvring, navigation, and dynamic positioning as well as energy management, deck handling and propulsion systems, and ship design services. Subsea solutions include single and multibeam echo sounders, sonars, AUV and USV, underwater navigation and communication systems. Training courses at locations globally, LNG solutions, information management, position reference systems and technology for seismic and drilling operations are also part of the company’s diverse technology portfolio. Additionally, Kongsberg Maritime provides services within EIT (Electro, Instrument & Telecom) engineering and system integration, on an EPC (Engineering, Procurement & Construction) basis.
Kongsberg Maritime is part of Kongsberg Gruppen (KONGSBERG), an international, knowledge-based group that celebrated 200 years in business during 2014. KONGSBERG supplies high-technology systems and solutions to customers in the oil and gas industry, the merchant marine, and the defence and aerospace industries.