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SHIPS AGENCY


DOES NOT FIT ALL IN THE WIND ENERGY SUPPORT BUSINESS


ONE SIZE


“It takes special expertise and a lot of experience to deliver the specialist support the renewables sector demands,” says Anthony Mollet, GAC UK’s General Manager.


He should know – the GAC Group has been providing shipping, logistics and marine services for more than 50 years and has been involved in several major on and offshore wind energy projects in the UK, including Walney 1 & 2, London Array and Westermost Rough.


That track record has taught Mollet and his colleagues – both in the UK and at GAC offices in more than 40 countries around the world – that there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution to meeting the needs of the wind energy industry. It takes in- depth understanding of the challenges involved, whether that's in delivering heavy lift equipment for the construction of new wind farms on and offshore, handling all the agency needs of vessels or taking care of crew changes.


INDUSTRY KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING


“It’s not enough to simply tweak the details of a range of traditional logistics services or classic ship agency support to fit the needs of the wind energy market,” says Mollet. “The right supplier needs to really understand the industry and the problems and priorities it presents.”


The Group has spent years studying the renewable energy industry and putting the knowledge gained into action. It is currently the only company in the UK that has the multiple expertise and capabilities to provide a wide range of services specifically tailored to the needs of the sector.


ON TIME, ON SPEC AND ON BUDGET It works its global network, extensive resources and experience in developing and executing complex project solutions to provide safe and timely support to all aspects of the industry. Whether it's a single inland delivery or multinational, multimodal project, they have proven their ability to do the job on time, on spec and on budget.


CHOOSE CAREFULLY


"The well-worn adage ‘Let the buyer beware‘ is just as important when selecting a support partner in the wind energy business as it is when buying a second-hand car,” adds Mollet.


“What may appear to be the cheapest offer on paper could well turn out to be a costly choice once the hidden extras, unforeseen circumstances and costs, invoicing discrepancies and other factors come to light. There's also a danger that smaller, single service providers may not have adequate compliance systems in place.”


Mindful of the huge range of criteria that have to be met, GAC operates worldwide in strict accordance with a comprehensive Code of Ethics covering everything from whistleblowing to anti-bribery.


FEATURE SPONSOR


Every single staff member is required to complete GAC's in-house Compliance & Ethics course. The Group is also committed to the highest standards related to Health, Safety, Security & the Environment (HSSE), underlined by its stringent global policy. And in the UK, wind energy players have the further assurance of GAC UK’s ISO9001:2008, FPAL and TRACE accreditation.


HANDS-ON


Mollet and his team have had hands-on experience of providing specialist services for several key projects. That includes being entrusted with the task of arranging the transportation and delivery of oversized turbines to the Irish Sea, as well as all the ship agency requirements for the vessel that carried them from the Netherlands to Liverpool and co-ordinating the movement of multiple vessels of different types and sizes in and out from busy ports and quaysides.


It was a complex task that required careful co-ordination and constant communication. That project and others like it, allowed the GAC team to demonstrate the value of local presence and expertise.


“We found tremendous benefit arranging weekly meetings with the customers’ procurement managers on site to review purchases and performance. Issues could be dealt with quickly and, most importantly, queries about costs and invoices were tackled on the spot. We reduced ageing receivables and allowed the customer to have timely and accurate invoices and receipts from GAC,”


Mollet adds; “Such proximity to the operation and dialogue with key personnel allowed relationships built on trust to grow and has ensured the company is at the table for upcoming projects elsewhere.”


68


www.windenergynetwork.co.uk


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