By Søren K. Nielsen, CEO, Svanehøj
As a supplier to the marine and offshore industries, and with customers and partners all over the world, we have of course been significantly affected by COVID-19. Fortunately, at Svanehøj we also have plenty to look forward to during this difficult time.
Since we were taken over by the investment fund Solix in the autumn of 2018, turnover for the Danish part of the business has more than doubled, which is primarily due to increased demand for our specialised deepwell fuel and cargo (gas) pumps. The green transition of international shipping is underway, and we are beginning to see a shift from oil to gas. A shift that will gain further momentum over the coming years. At the same time, we are finding that it is not only new ships that are built to run on gas. Most recently, we have been chosen as a fuel pump supplier to retrofit 15 Very Large Gas Carriers.
In November we strengthened our Service Department with the acquisition of the FORCE Technology Marine Equipment Service. Svanehøj is now a one-stop-shop that both supplies the pump systems and handles the overall service. The acquisition has made us a significant service operator and we now have excellent opportunities to conquer a growing global market for servicing LPG tankers.
We have just completed a major transformation of our administration building in Denmark, which now reflects that Svanehøj is an international, high-tech company. In 2021, we will embark on the next project and begin streamlining our production and warehouse facilities. With growth ahead of us, it is necessary to invest to ensure our high product quality and security of supply are maintained. In addition to the increasing demand for gas pumps, we must also take into account the fact that we doubled the size of our Service Department in 2020. This means that in future, even more, spare parts will be handled and delivered to our customers.
We are just a few weeks away from the end of 2020, and despite COVID-19, we have managed to increase revenue in Svanehøj by more than 30%. Our employees have been incredibly flexible and open to change, so that is very much to their credit. Even when the municipalities around us closed down and 22 of our production staff could not come to work, we managed to handle the situation and deliver a record number of orders on time. I’m enormously proud of that.
We are heading into 2021 with the expectation that the high level of activity will be maintained and a hope that COVID-19 will soon be behind us. Although we have been able to find creative solutions and seize new digital opportunities, we look forward to being able to travel freely again. We have become skilled at video meetings, but we miss meeting customers and partners face-to-face.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to wish all employees, customers and partners a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year.