By setting a new common standard, we seek to strike the right balance between cost-effectiveness and the technical operational performance of our vessels. This will translate into increased safety and availability, and ultimately improve our value proposition to the customers.

Improving operational performance and reliability is not merely a question of timely repairs or preventive maintenance. In a number of cases the total costs of maintaining and operating a vessel will cancel out or even exceed the price of purchasing a new for replacement. As we operate a fleet of some 500 vessels, we must take on a general view and consider the total life cycle costs of our assets. Through the ‘Total cost of ownership’ (TCO) initiative we seek to provide a clear approach to assessing fleet repairs, maintenance and replacements from a lower total cost perspective.

The initiative is essentially a set of operational standards that allows for:

• optimised decision-making regarding repairs vs. preventive maintenance

• increased efficiency per maintenance activity or asset repair

• estimating the best time for replacing a vessel

• providing an overview for repair and maintenance activities


When assessing ‘Total cost of ownership’ (TCO), one needs to consider both direct Striking the right balance and indirect costs related to a vessel – from initial purchase to sale or disposal. Costs of installing, deploying, operating, upgrading, repairing and maintaining the vessel must be included in this equation. “Uncovering these will allow us to determine the total costs, their spread over time, and enable a more accurate forecasting of future vessel requirements,” says Kristian Brauner, Chief Technical Officer, and owner of the initiative. Once fully implemented, by late 2014, the initiative will have produced:

A Maintenance & Repair strategy: Introducing a common SVITZER standard for maintenance and repair by which we can enhance availability and reliability while operating at the lowest possible cost.

A Docking strategy: By developing standard docking specifications and regulatory requirements, we seek to optimise our planning, reduce docking time and the number of unforeseen breakdowns.

Global Fleet Renewal criteria: Establishing a set of global fleet renewal criteria will make us better at forecasting requirements for future vessels. 

An Operational Performance Evaluation standard: By setting a global standard for evaluating our operational performance, we will increase our benchmarking efforts and operational excellence.


Technical Manager for Europe, Peter Glud Jensen anticipates regional benefits from this globally-driven initiative: “With this initiative it will be possible to plan for future maintenance and docking when our tugs are built. Unforeseen repairs could occur, but scheduled repairs will enable our crews to purchase spare parts way in advance. It enables both economy of scale and predictability when it comes to expenditure planning,” Peter says and concludes, “It will make it easier for the regions to discuss improvements on a regular basis. For the crews it means simpler procedures and provides a clear standard of when and how maintenance is needed. It will undoubtedly raise the standard of our fleet.”

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