September saw international Maritime and Shipping professionals come together in Hamburg at the world’s leading international maritime fair; SMM. SMM 2018 welcomed 50,000 visitors (including 3 of Faststream’s finest) from more than 120 countries and boasted over 2,280 exhibitors, where business deals were made, trends and issues of the international maritime industry debated, and informal networking receptions held.
In attendance was Martin Bennell, Managing Director of Faststream Recruitment EMEA & Americas as well as Principal Consultants Chris Slade and Simon Grant.
We sent this senior team over to the SMM event to ensure we are at the forefront of industry news, market trends and challenges. We bring you our findings; please do not hesitate to get in touch to discuss any of this further.
Maritime software and digitalisation
A tangible optimistic energy dominated the SMM show, with particular vibrancy in the halls purely dedicated to maritime software and digitalisation. Current talk of big data and the digital revolution across many maritime disciplines was particularly highlighted at the event. The senior maritime professionals we encountered were embracing a positive attitude in the growing changes and seeking advice and guidance from the many digital experts at hand at the show.
Cruise ship dominated as the main attraction
It was clear that the SMM attendee audience was looking for a piece of the Cruise pie. This came as no surprise to the Faststream Recruitment team with the predominant European New Build market driven by Cruise Ship construction. This unrelenting surge in cruise ship orders is now standing at 113 (as of 24th July 2018).
Regulatory change still driving an impact
With recent regulatory changes launched and with no let-up in sight, attendees at SMM were keen to discuss the opportunities and threats of these changes.
One such regulatory change was the drive to 2020 Sulphur target (as of 2020 all ships trading outside of sulphur Emission Control Areas (ECAs) will be required to use fuel with a sulphur content of up to 0.5 pct, a considerable reduction from the currently permitted maximum of 3.5 pct.) and attendees were keen to find out the most cost-efficient activities and technologies to meet the requirement.
As well as Sulphur 2020, the Ballast Water Convention was still a hot topic even after its launch in 2017. This is a key international measure for environmental protection that aims to stop the spread of potentially invasive aquatic species in ships’ ballast water. Whilst a percentage of ship owners have led the way and made the investment, it is clear that the remainder of the industry is still trying to find the best approach to get this right.
Opportunities – New vacancies straight from the show
The Maritime sector is on the up-turn and clients are hiring! Faststream Recruitment was delighted to take on a large number of new job vacancies during the show. New job vacancies include Senior Sales staff in Germany, UK, Spain and Netherlands, Electronics Engineers in the UK, Germany and France, and Surveyors in UK, Germany, Denmark and Belgium. Contact the Faststream Recruitment team to discuss these opportunities in more detail.
With future meetings arranged to discuss the growth plans when budgets are renewed, companies are growing and hiring. Keep an eye out on our website for our latest new vacancies.
We gained a lot from SMM 2018 and welcomed the opportunity to visit Hamburg where we are delighted to see new and old faces. We are already booked to attend SMM 2020 and are excited to see how the current trends develop over the next two years.