In the wake of its recent bankruptcy filing, Norwegian ballast water management system manufacturer OceanSaver’s assets have been sold to a Norway-based offshore and maritime equipment supplier.
IMS Group purchased “all intellectual property, certificates and assets” from the OceanSaver Trustee, according to a statement released by the IMS Group subsidiary TeamTec, which manufactures marine waste incinerating systems and sells the Andritz SeaSOx Scrubbers.
IMS Group chief executive Roy Langseth said “We think it is of significant added value for customers that the ballast water treatment product range is integrated into an already profitable and sustainable business with several maritime products.”
The statement also addressed the impact of delayed IMO ballast water regulations, mirroring factors cited as leading to OceanSaver’s demise in a July statement from the troubled company as well as a tribute posted to LinkedIn by company founder Aage Bjørn Andersen after OceanSaver filed for bankruptcy on 13 September.
TeamTec’s statement said “In July, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) decided to postpone the implementation of the ballast water convention by two years, delaying it to 2019. The delay has had a major impact on the market for retrofitting ballast treatment systems.”
IMO’s Ballast Water Management Convention entered into force in early September after adoption in 2004, although IMO’s MEPC 71 has agreed to defer installation deadlines by two years, pushing compliance back to 2019. Several observers have predicted multiple bankruptcies as companies struggle to remain afloat in the interim, and a number of companies are listed as having filed for bankruptcy on the same day as OceanSaver at the local registry office in Brønnøysund.
In addition to IMO delays, depressed shipbuilding activity in recent years affected OceanSaver, causing “significant downward pressure on prices and uptake of ballast water treatment systems”, according to the TeamTec statement.
OceanSaver’s bankruptcy filing came less than two months after the company lost a four-year arbitration against filter maker Bollfilter Nordic and had to pay both sides’ costs.
OceanSaver’s BWMS had secured US Coast Guard type-approval without operational limitations on 23 December 2016, making it the first electrochlorinated system to receive the approval.
TeamTec chief executive Olav Voie commented “OceanSaver has now a unique and well tested technology, and we are proud to have this product as a part of our portfolio.”