New survey vessel gains some heavyweight expertise

DURBAN – SA Shipyards, the company, is gearing up in advance of the serious work of building the navy’s new hydrographic survey vessel. 

First steel has already been cut and the shipyard is becoming a hive of activity.

At the same time the shipyard is also building a barge, and is actively seeking ship repair contracts. It was in this respect that SA Shipyards’ ship repair division was strengthened when it recently welcomed a trio of experts.

John Coetzee, the new sales manager, has notched up a wealth of knowledge in various companies during his 47 years in shipping, while Louis Maujean, the project manager, has 38 years behind him. Derek Kurten, the national sales manager for the division, has 35 years under his belt.

Coetzee’s long stint in the industry began in Durban and his career also involved working as an independent in Johannesburg, before he returned to Durban to work for another company.

Maujean’s previous job involved looking after 13 ships, doing all the technical work and running the South African operation for a German-based maritime carrier.

“I used to work for shipping owners; now I’m working for owners’ contractors, so I can see both sides of the story and that’s to my advantage,” he said.

Derek Kurten has experience in vessel operations, chartering and ship brokering and he previously worked for a ship’s agency and logistical services company.

Charles Maher, who heads up the division, said SA Shipyards was thrilled to have assembled such a talented and experienced team.

THE MERCURY 

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