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Dec 19, 2014

SNCM is a Marseille based ferry operator with lines to Corsica and North Africa and holds a 7 vessel fleet and a Public service delegation for a coming 9 year period.

The company, which employs 1.600 people, generated a total amount of sales including public compensation of € 270m in 2013 and an Ebitda of € (19.5)m.

60.7% of this turnover is related to the Public service delegation (of which 46% result from public compensation), which concerns 5 connections between Marseille and Corsica: Ajaccio, Bastia, Balagne, Porto-Vecchio and Propriano.
The Administrative receivers, Maître Abitbol and Maître Douhaire, have initiated a process to identify potential acquirers of the different parts of SNCM’s various activities and/or assets (including fully owned subsidiaries), through an asset deal.
The candidates will have full ability to present one or several offers on perimeters of activities and/or assets for which they are interested. Regarding the Public service delegation, the tenders can be on one or several ferry connections, but have to be described separately ferry connection by ferry connection and should not be indivisible.

Ferry Sinks on Lake Tanganyika

Dec 14, 2014

BBC News Africa

At least 129 bodies have been recovered from Lake Tanganyika in the Democratic Republic of Congo, after a ferry capsized on Friday. Local transport minister Laurent Sumba Kahozi said the search for survivors was continuing. Rescue workers found passengers in the water on Sunday, clinging on to petrol cans and other objects.

Correspondents say such accidents are fairly common in the region as ferries are often overloaded. Life jackets are also often missing and many people cannot swim. Boats in the region are often overcrowded and accidents are common

Officials in Katanga province said strong winds and overloading caused the boat, the MV Mutambala, to capsize. A number of women and children were among the victims in the disaster, which happened in the early hours of Friday morning. The number of survivors stands at 232, mostly men, the provincial minister for transport said.

LNG ferry for Tallink

Dec 12, 2014

Shippax Information

According to a press release, Tallink and Meyer Turku (formerly STX Finland) have signed a letter of intent for a LNG powered ferry. The ship will cost around MEUR 230 and will be built at Turku shipyard. It will be LNG-fuelled and delivered at the beginning of 2017. Approximate length is 212 m with GT of 49,000. The ship will operate between Helsinki (Finland) and Tallinn (Estonia). It is planned to carry 2,800 passengers. Over the next few months Tallink Grupp and Meyer Turku will work towards the shipbuilding contract and financing arrangements.

Incat Contracts Ferry for River Thames

Dec 9, 2014

Incat Tasmania

Incat has secured a contract for the construction of a 35m passenger ferry for operations on the River Thames in London. The contract was signed by Incat Chairman Robert Clifford and representatives of MBNA Thames Clippers. Incat Chairman Robert Clifford said “The role of the vessel is to provide rapid passenger transport services on the River Thames in Central London on various routes ranging from Putney in the west to Royal Woolwich Arsenal in the east.”

Incat Hull 075 is be designed by One2Three – Naval Architects, with assistance by Revolution Design, as a high speed passenger catamaran ferry. The vessel will be designed to comply with the HSC Category A with MCA Equivalences appropriate to operation solely in UK Category C waters.

Tender for New Sydney Harbour Ferries

Dec 4, 2014

Baird Maritime

Australia’s State Government of New South Wales has announced a six-vessel tender for a fleet of new ferries for Sydney Harbour. The design of the ferries closely resembles the “First Fleet” vessels currently in operation on Sydney’s waterways. The concept design and specifications outlined in the tender were developed using feedback from customers in tandem with maritime industry collaboration. Tenders for the new inner harbour vessels are now open and will close in February 2015. The detailed design and construction of the ferries will then begin next year, with the first vessel scheduled to be on the water in 2016.

Each vessel will carry up to 400 passengers and feature outdoor viewing areas, approximately 90 additional seats compared to the current First Fleet vessels, two wide walk-around decks, WiFi internet access, and realtime journey information. The ferries will service all inner harbour routes, from Watsons Bay in the east to Cockatoo Island in the west, and will use new wharf facilities such as Barangaroo, which is expected to be completed in 2016. The vessels will also be used to replace some older vessels in the fleet.

Interferry Welcomes IMO Decision on LNG Fuel Tanks

Nov 24, 2014

Interferry News Release

Interferry has welcomed a decision at last week’s IMO Maritime Safety Committee meeting (MSC94) setting out rules for the location of fuel tanks on LNG-powered ships – a decision that the trade association says will safeguard further development of the LNG option. Following concerted cross industry coordination, key member states agreed a way forward that offers impact protection of the tanks in the event of collision or grounding while avoiding the potentially prohibitive requirements of proposals previously under discussion. 

Until now the IMO’s efforts to avoid damage to LNG tanks and the consequent fire hazard have focused on placement of the tanks according to a mix of prescriptive rules and sophisticated calculation models.  This has caused increasing concern among ship designers and owners because LNG is more voluminous per energy content than conventional fuels and therefore needs bigger tank systems.  Objectors to the approach argued that the space methodology limited the fuel autonomy of vessels - raising the unreasonable expectation of them having to refuel at every port of call. 

Good News from Greece

Nov 21, 2014

Shippax Information

Riding on the wave of a strong summer, Greece’s Attica Holdings, operator of Blue Star Ferries and Superfast Ferries, has pushed up its profit for the first nine months of 2014. The company's €6.11m net profit for the first three quarters of 2014 is a significant 47% increase on the €4.15m recorded 12 months ago. The company notes that for the nine months of 2014 the revenue increase was registered in the Greek domestic routes, but was offset by a decrease in income in the Adriatic Sea. With Attica in positive territory for the nine months, a €4m boost is set to come in the final quarter from the sale of the BLUE STAR ITHAKI to the Canadian government for €31m.

Stena to Convert Ferry to Methanol

Nov 19, 2014

Lloyd’s List

STENA Line has confirmed it will be converting one of its vessels to run off methanol. The Stena Germanica conversion will cost €22m ($27.6m) and will begin in January 2015. The conversion is in response to the sulphur emission regulations that come into force at the end of this year. All vessels operating in an emission control area will be forced to use fuels that have less than 0.1% sulphur content or use abatement technology to remove the sulphur in the ships’ exhaust to an equivalent level.

Some owners such as DFDS and Finnlines have already said they will mostly use exhaust gas scrubbers to meet the sulphur challenge, while others have begun ordering dual-fuelled vessels capable of running off liquefied natural gas.

MAN to PowerNew Chinese Ferries

Nov 18, 2014

World Maritime News

MAN Diesel & Turbo has secured a contract for the supply of four engines for the diesel-mechanical propulsion of two passenger ferries for Chinese shipping companies, Huadong Ferry and Dadong Ferry. The two newbuildings are currently under construction at Huanghai Shipyard in Shangdong, China. Both vessels have a passenger capacity of 1,500 and are intended to connect South Korea with the Chinese mainland upon entering service.

The China Shipowners’ Association has proposed limiting the maximum age of a vessel in service to 28 years. The two ferry newbuildings will enter service in autumn 2016, replacing vessels about to reach the new, proposed age limit. In the near future, more and more ships are similarly expected to be decommissioned.

Gotland Orders LNG Ferry from China

Nov 14, 2014

World Maritime News

Sweden’s Rederi AB Gotland has signed a contract with GSI Shipyard in China for a new LNG-powered ro-pax ferry with the capacity to carry 1650 passengers. Upon delivery in 2017 the new ferry will become the first Swedish-flagged passenger vessel powered by LNG. The ferry is a SEK 1 billion (USD 134.9m) investment and the single largest investment in the company’s 150-year history.

Rederi AB Gotland has had a successful relationship with GSI Shipyard since 1999, when the contract was signed for M/S Visby and M/S Gotland, which were delivered in 2003. In the years 2006 to 2012 the yard delivered a total of six product tankers to Gotland.

Gotland says that it worked together with GSI on the design of the new ferry to create optimal hull lines for reducing energy consumption and environmental impact. The concept of the ship is a further development of the existing SF1500 ship design. Following the order, Gotland will focus on creating the necessary LNG supply infrastructure.