Cooperation towards efficiency. Eriks Econosto, Peter Zorge
We can’t do it alone. Our vessels are what they are, in part, because of the suppliers we work with. Like our relationships with our customers, those with our suppliers are usually for the long-term – in some cases our connections go back to the dawn of standardised shipbuilding and beyond. In this edition of the Damen magazine we meet just a few of the suppliers that help us to deliver the high quality solutions that meet our clients’ needs.
Eriks Econosto has been in the maritime business since the days when steam was the prominent form of propulsive power for the shipping industry. Back then, the needs of these steam-powered vessels formed the basis of the company’s product offering. With the arrival of diesel power, Eriks Econosto’s portfolio evolved to include the entire scope of on-board installations. Today – a truly global player – the company is Damen’s main supplier of valves, couplings and fittings and remote controlled actuators, in addition to measurement and control systems.
For Peter Zorge, Director Business Unit Maritime, close contact with Damen has been important every step of the way. “It’s not just about selling products,” he says. “It’s also about listening to what Damen needs.” To this end, Eriks Econosto has a department dedicated to Damen contracts. This includes one person who works at Damen’s head office approximately two days a week to give technical advice and coordinate logistics.
As well as discussing future trends like asset management and supply chain solutions, such short lines of communication have resulted in valuable feedback too. Key subjects include supply chain optimisation and increasing the efficiency of operations; thus complementing Damen’s own focus on reducing the total cost of ownership for vessel owners. “In terms of supply chain solutions, we have condensed our portfolio by standardising components. For example, instead of having ten different valves for ten different systems, we now have three or four types of valves. We have also worked with Damen engineers on more automated systems. In the past, every valve was manually operated, but nowadays a great number are operated by remote controlled actuators.”
Peter has worked for Eriks Econosto for the last 28 years and, in that time, has built up a very close and productive relationship between his maritime business unit and Damen.
This is something that I am extremely proud of. Damen keeps us thinking about efficiency and about solutions. For sure, we are Damen’s supplier and Damen is our customer, but there is always a healthy form of equality.