Experience gained from a long history in the gas carrier business has allowed BSM to devise some interesting approaches to efficiency and safety
Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) has more than 45 years in the third-party LNG vessel management business, including design and consultancy work. The company currently manages more than 90 gas carriers, with 57% operating in the LNG transport industry, 36% in LPG transport and 8% operating in the ethylene transport industry.
Across all sectors, safety is put at a premium, with SIGTTO’s LNG and LPG Experience Matrix used as the minimum requirement for officer selection.
As well as mandatory International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) and liquid simulator training, BSM’s officers undergo in-house advanced LNG/gas-tanker training programmes.
A pipeline has also been developed for junior officers and cadets on gas tankers to develop their LNG-related skills.
According to Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement Singapore managing director Capt Raymond Peter, talking at the 2018 LNG Ship/Shore Interface Conference in Singapore, BSM considers a long-term approach to safety as the best way to retain valuable experience gained in day-to-day shipboard work and across many cargo transfer operations.
“We wish to manage gas supply vessels for other owners, which is a growth area for us”
Indeed, when Ian Beveridge was appointed CEO of BSM in 2018 – an extension of his role as CEO of Bernhard Schulte, BSM’s ship-owning sister company – he noted, “Our LNG capabilities have been our focus for the last decade,” adding “There are great opportunities in management and on the owning side, where we have also invested.”
2018 saw further expansion of this capacity, with the acquisition of German company Pronav adding six additional LNG carriers to BSM’s managed fleet.
Mr Beveridge also recognised the potential market for management services for LNG bunker vessels: “We are seen as an LNG bunker provider and are now invited to participate in all the relevant tenders. We also wish to manage these gas supply vessels for other owners, which is a growth area for us.”
In February 2019, BSM took on management of the world’s largest LNG bunker supply vessel, Kairos, which was launched in Hamburg.
The vessel is owned by Babcock Schulte Energy (BSE), a joint venture between Babcock international Group and Bernhard Schulte.
With a capacity of 7,500m3, the vessel has been deployed to the Baltic region to service a number of clients, including the Linde/AGA terminal in Nynäshamn, Sweden, and the Klaipėda LNG fuelling station in Lithuania.
BSM’s director of energy projects Angus Campbell said: “Our industry is evaluating ways to meet new emission regulations and reduce its carbon footprint. The use of natural gas is emerging as the most sustainable solution for powering global maritime transportation into the future.”
In 2016, BSM signed an operational partner agreement with Dreifa Energy Limited, developer of a floating regasification solution that splits the floating storage and regasification unit concept into floating storage units, converted from LNG carriers, and a smaller floating regasification unit, converted from a platform supply vessel. The solution is targeted at small- and medium-scale or phased developments, or those where an interim solution is required.