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Kongsberg Maritime in Denmark

A major seaport and commercial centre, Aalborg is also home to Kongsberg Maritime Denmark which has had a presence here for 30 years.

  • Text:Stuart Brewer

Aalborg on the Jutland Peninsula may appear on a map to be an inland city, but it is situated at the narrowest point of the Limfjord, which separates the mainland from the North Jutlandic Island, and has outlets to the sea in both east and west directions. It is Denmark’s fourth largest city and the regional capital of North Jutland.  

A major seaport and commercial centre, Aalborg is also home to Kongsberg Maritime Denmark which has had a presence here for 30 years since 1991 when Swedish propeller manufacturer KaMeWa set up shop there. Since then, it has been owned by Rolls-Royce and from 2019 by KONGSBERG after its acquisition of Rolls-Royce Commercial Marine.
Peter Studsbjerg, managing director, Kongsberg Maritime Denmark, and area financial controller Baltics and Russia began working in Aalborg in 2001 as finance manager and now leads a team of approx. 40 people split between administrative employees, field service engineers and workshop engineers. “We were 20 people then” says Peter “but we have grown since then”.

 The KM office in Aalborg.

Peter explains that the activities of KM Aalborg are based around the KaMeWa/Rolls Royce heritage. “Field service and workshop are our main activities in our marine facility here in Aalborg Denmark. Through our field service our service engineers provide support in connection with our mix of products in propulsion and engines and deck machinery and integrated solutions. Our workshop mainly overhauls Rolls Royce products like tunnel thrusters and propeller hubs.”

However, Peter is keen to highlight a new revenue stream, “I’d also like to mention one more main leg we have because during the pandemic we started with our tools rental service. We found out that for both our service engineers and the yards we had some challenges to provide different, specialized tools so we made a special toolbox with different tools and equipment and it’s a growing business that complements our strong performance on the aftermarket side.”
Some of the growth in KM Aalborg’s business Peter believes is due to Denmark’s strong maritime presence with it having the world’s 12th largest fleet measured by registered tonnage and the 5th largest measured by the amount of tonnage controlled by Danish owners. He also points out that Danish owners and operators are making huge investments in new technologies and decarbonisation of shipping.

aalborg2.jpgFrom left, Jesper Raasthøj – manager sales aftermarket, Peter Studsbjerg – managing director and finance, Rasmus Ydegaard – manager workshop and Claus Trudslev – manager field service.

“That presents both opportunities and hurdles,” says Peter, “Due to the size of the Danish maritime sector it can be challenging to coordinate all efforts to support our customers, but it keeps us busy and our business is going well. We have of course been hit by the pandemic because we were not allowed to travel and when we could travel there’s been different restrictions. But there’s a demand for our services at the moment, and we are working on a lot of interesting projects.”
One such project is the switch from the 20-year old Rolls Royce Contaz 35 azimuthing contra-rotating thrusters on “Scandlines” four Puttgarden-Rødby ferries to be replaced with Azipull 120 FP push thruster units from Kongsberg Maritime. As of August 2021, half of the 16 thrusters have been replaced. “Scandlines are very focused on going the green way and that involves a broad scope of work.  There are also massive investments being made towards developing technologies and introducing carbon neutral vessels by 2030-2050 so we’re optimistic about the future,” concluded Peter.