Clive Richardson, ceo of V.Group, while notes there’s a focus among owners today on controlling vessel opex and avoiding operational delays, so that vessels earn maximum charter fees in what he describes as “thin trading conditions”.
“However,” Richardson adds, “increasingly, owners want solutions that help them manage their assets not just a technical management solution.”
Richardson’s company’s philosophy maintains that being part of a client’s extended enterprise is the right approach.
“That way,” he explains, “we understand their problems better and can offer the right services to help them manage the challenging environment they find themselves in.”
In March this year, V.Group moved to acquire Bibby Ship Management. Richardson says the integration is “going really well”.
“The acquisition means that we’re now in a leading market position in offshore ship management, to add to our leading position in cargo and passenger vessels and the integration places us in the best possible position for further growth,” he says.
While stressing the need to continue on bedding down all the new parts of the expanded conglomerate, Richardson admits acquisitive V.Group could be making more buys soon. “Our approach is to grow our marine services business more broadly and more deeply. We will do this organically and through acquisitions,” Richardson reveals.
Concluding, chin up, Richardson maintains: “There are always opportunities in shipping, whatever the market throws at us.”