Firm Restates Commitment to Maritime Sector

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Kayode Fasua

The XPO Marine Services Limited has described the company’s dealings with the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) as robust and professional.

The company also expressed its determination to be a key player in federal government’s projection of growing the Nigerian maritime industry by at least five per cent between 2018 and 2019.

In readiness to partner with the government to grow the sub-sector, XPO Marine, being West Africa’s frontline sub-sea and marine support services outfit, said it had moved to boost its workforce.

Disclosing this in a statement, the spokesman for the firm, Mr. Princewill Ubani, refuted a recent motion filed by three House of Representatives members accusing it of an underhand dealing with NIMASA, in an alleged leasing of six speed boats at $173,930 monthly, without need assessment.

Ubani, in the statement, noted that the: “The Committee was misled and wrongly informed. Following our interaction with the committee, we, XPO, and five other companies rendering the same services had responded to the allegation and refuted the wrong allegations by providing them with more information to assist them to be better informed.

“The committee has thus been better informed. This has led to the building of a better relationship between XPO Marine Services and the Committee, looking at the entire matter, and considering the fact that they are all joint stakeholders in the federal government project.

“We are also building human, financial and technical capacities to meet the increasing needs of the various IOCs, including ongoing acquisition efforts of various classes of vessel and other marine assets to meet the demanding needs of the Nigerian oil and gass offshore operations.

“The business shall implement the lean six sigma methodology throughout its operations, to improve turnaround time and reduce operational cost. And for your information, XPO Marine Services’ asset acquisition strategy has been to ensure that its assets are made up of predominantly of dual purpose and multi-use vessel capabilities, in order to reduce asset under-utilisation, to the barest minimum.”

Ubani added that in line with the new policy, XPO Marine Services would ensure that its vessels’ crew were technically and operationally competent and that in the short term, the company would contract out vessel management to professional managers, while it would also begin to recruit and retrain experienced Nigerian crew members.
“Our business strategy is predicated on becoming the leading provider of sub-sea and marine support services to the West African oil and gas industry. XPO Marine Services understands the trends and forces that will shape its business in the future and is moving swiftly to prepare for what is to come. In order to achieve this, it has crafted a long-term roadmap.

“Besides, we intend to focus on providing services to blue-chip oil and gas companies, and to achieve this, the company is building its competencies and processes around the key issues that influence the client/vendor selection decisions,” Ubani stated.

He stressed that the firm would, within the next 12 months, build a comprehensive IMR support vessel fleet, so that the oil majors can find it easy to contract end-to-end operations out to it, without having to worry about managing different vendors.

In terms of boosting its operations, being a fledgling concern in the maritime industry in Nigeria, the XPO Marine Services’ spokesman explained that the company would institute best-class operational process, and proper management of tools and techniques, to enhance process efficiency and reduce wastage in the system.