Business was good for regional ship repair operators participating in this year's Posidonia Exhibition, the world's most prestigious maritime event. Shipyards in Turkey and Portugal were among those who concluded business deals during the first few days of the exhibit.
Every two years, Posidonia attracts the world's maritime community to Greece, the world's biggest shipping power – a good environment for making connections. "Posidonia is very fruitful for us and the biggest event we participate in...We have concluded three major deals during the first two days," said Nedime Ozoglu, Repair Division Marketing & Estimating, Besiktas Shipyard. "We have been at Posidonia since 2010, so this is our third participation and we will definitely come back in 2018. Winning new business is important but talking to our friends and customers is the key to maintaining strong relationships."
Portugal's Lisnave and Turkey's Gemak also inked repair deals with fleet owners during the first few days of Posidonia 2016. "This is a great, given the current market's prevailing conditions with a weak freight market," said Alex Scaramangas of Resolute Marine Services. He believes that the sector will improve. "A lot of dry docking repairs were brought forward in 2015 in order to avoid implementation of the BWT system so, subsequently, we were left with a bit of a vacuum in the first half of 2016. We remain optimistic, however...on the bulker market the consensus is that there will be some improvement."
His view is shared by Ozoglu, who believes that 2016 will be a better than expected year for the ship repair sector in Turkey. "Many customers we have spoken with at Posidonia this week share the opinion that the market is improving marginally. While 2016 as a whole will not be better than last year, it will be better than expected," said she.
Competition in ship repair is fierce in the current market, and over 200 shipyards were represented at Posidonia. "Lisnave provides excellent service with capacity to accommodate six vessels simultaneously on dry dock, but we cannot compare European shipyards with China, not even Turkey, which is more competitive in terms of price," added Scaramangas. "Posidonia is very important for us, not just because we conclude specific business during the show, but simply because our absence would be noticed. It is a good opportunity to meet with clients who visit the venue and it offers great networking opportunities through the various social events," said he.
More than 1.800 exhibitors from 90 countries participated in this year's show, which set a new record in terms of exhibitor floor space occupying 40,000 sqm of the Athens Metropolitan Expo. More than 40 parallel seminars and conferences were organized at the same venue during the same week, another Posidonia record.