Optimarin ready for ‘wave of orders’after unique USCG filter approval

Source: press release, 16 December 2020

Optimarin – frontrunner in ballast water treatment
Optimarin – frontrunner in ballast water treatment (photo: Optimarin)

Ballast water treatment specialist Optimarin has received updated United States Coast Guard (USCG) approval confirming its position as the only UV-system supplier with certification for a choice of two filters. The flexibility of selecting Filtrex or Boll filters means all Optimarin components are now available from two suppliers, ensuring maximum availability and express delivery for what the company refers to as “the coming wave” of industry orders.

“The race for compliance is on,” comments Tore Andersen, Optimarin EVP Sales and Marketing, “and we’re focused on providing a seamless, high quality supply chain for shipowners and operators to satisfy demand.”

“Being in the unique position of having a USCG certified system with two filters – not to mention a holding time of just two hours – gives us optimal flexibility and a short lead time for owners that must comply before the absolutely final IMO deadline of 2024 (for vessels with delayed International Oil Pollution Surveys). We’ve always been at the forefront of the market when it comes to compliance, receiving the first ever full USCG approval in 2016, and we’re constantly working to maintain that position and deliver complete peace of mind for our global customer base. This certification is further proof of that commitment,” says Andersen.

The new approval follows a programme of independent testing by DNV GL and comes only weeks after the Norwegian-headquartered specialist, exclusively focused on ballast water treatment (BWT) since 1994, received revised IMO G8 certification.

Optimarin has now sold well over 1000 systems, with more than 700 currently fitted and operational. Leiv Kallestad, Optimarin CEO, says the business is building strong momentum after a relatively quiet summer trading period – due to the COVID-19 pandemic – with a fourth quarter order intake expected to surpass that of the first quarter 2020. Amongst the new contracts are a number of fleet agreements with several leading European owners, such as Hapag-Lloyd.

“The time for initial enquiries to translate to tangible sales is decreasing, as more customers move to ensure full fleet compliance and operational flexibility,” he says. “We’re delighted to be building business with really first-class industry leaders such as Hapag-Lloyd, and see significant potential ahead. Our system, which is simple to install and operate, is recognised as a remarkably well engineered unit, constantly upgraded and refined to remain, in our view, the very best BWT system in the world. This fact, combined with a low installation cost and first-class service, puts us at the vanguard of the industry.”

Kallestad continues, “We could see the retrofit wave emerging before COVID and the March lock-down, and believe it will pick up again soon, with strong sales and after sales activity in 2021, and a real surge of contracts into 2022 and 2023. The mandate to comply is obviously a catalyst for that activity, but it’s our trusted, market proven technology, network and expertise that really puts Optimarin in pole position. After many years of hard work and dedication to this niche segment we can see that owners now consider us as a trusted partner for long-term compliance, performance and support. It’s a role we relish and, with unique developments such as this approval, work hard to consolidate.”

The Optimarin Ballast System (OBS) has full EX approval from USCG and IMO. In addition, OBS boasts certification from a comprehensive range of classification organisations, such as ABS, BV, DNV GL, LR, CCS and MLIT Japan.