Optimarin has announced that its final figures for 2019 show a record-breaking year for the ballast water treatment (BWT) specialist, with close to a doubling of revenues for system sales and servicing, healthy profits, and a significantly increased order intake. The Norwegian headquartered firm, which celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, is now looking to continue the growth in 2020 ahead of what CEO Leiv Kallestad refers to as “the imminent retrofit wave”.
After a solid 2018, Optimarin continued its upwards trajectory by recording revenues of around NOK 300million (USD 33million) with an EBITDA of approximately 10%. It has now sold close to 1000 of its market proven, USCG approved and simple to install UV-based systems.
“In our view, nobody knows BWT like Optimarin and, in a market that needs tried and tested, compliant and reliable technology, that established expertise is operating as a real business driver,” Kallestad comments. “We understand the needs of our customers intimately and have built an organisation that supports them every step of the way – from initial enquiries, to system specification and installation, operation, and seamless after sales service and support.”
“Over the past year we’ve strengthened our management and engineering functions to ensure we’re positioned to take advantage of the significant growth potential on the horizon, as well as catering for the needs of existing and new customers for the long-term. In addition, we’ve consolidated our fully redundant supply chain, allowing us to scale-up production and, when required, respond with ‘fast track’ installations for customers where time is of the essence.”
He continues: “This is a company that is dedicated to both BWT and outstanding customer service – the market recognises that commitment and, I’m delighted to say, is responding very positively.”
Kallestad says that the second half of 2019 followed a similar pattern to the first 6 months, with increased business activity in key shipping areas including North West Europe, South East Asia and the Mediterranean, and recovery in segments such as offshore. He states that “good progress” was made in all target markets.
As a result, the orderbook is “stronger than ever before” and, as Kallestad points out, sales will accelerate to new levels ahead of the imminent retrofit wave occasioned by the need for shipowners to be fully IMO and USCG compliant.
“2020 will be a key time for decision makers within the industry, and that should lead to a ‘boom’ for this specialist niche in the years to follow. That’s why we’ve invested in the infrastructure and dedicated individuals that will allow us to realise the opportunity on the horizon and supply the market with first class systems and support – when they need it, where they need it, and how they need it. That will help us build trusted long-term relationships, delivering long-term value for all our company stakeholders.”
Optimarin is currently working on system refinements that will benefit both new and existing customers. The modular Optimarin Ballast System (OBS) was the first system in the world to achieve full USCG approval (2016), while the firm was also the first BWT supplier to introduce a full 5-year parts and service guarantee for fleet agreements in 2017.