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Heidmar Marine Forum: Top Draw

March 27, 2015

A packed house of 140 tanker industry guests and Heidmar pool partners participated in the Heidmar Marine Forum VII in Stamford, CT on March 17 and 18.  The event has continued to grow each year, always raising the bar on its own high standards and attracting top talent from across the industry.

This year’s event kicked off with the ever-popular “One-on-Ones”.  During a six-hour period, attendees had exclusive access to seventeen different industry experts and an opportunity to grill them on the latest developments in the tanker vetting and quality arena.  Those fielding the in-depth questions and providing the educated answers included representatives from IMT, Koch, Shell and Chevron.

The formal Marine Forum platform took place on March 18.  A stellar cast of speakers gave guests insights into a broad and varied range of subjects, touching on all manner of tanker industry disciplines.  Katharina Stanzel, MD of Intertanko, talked passionately about her organization’s progress in improving its members cash flow through faster processing of accounts receivables from counterparties.  She noted that cash is king in shipping and the unnecessary stalling of payments could lead to quality issues.  Her subject, rarely alluded to in the normal run of business, is a matter of considerable concern and of a kind that the Heidmar Marine Forum has always been adept at providing a platform for.   Other equally engrossing speakers included Capt. Fakirmohammed Kadir, Global Manager of Quality for IMT, who spoke extensively about his company’s criteria for ship selection; Capt. David Cotterell, Director of OCIMF, on the programs his organization is executing; and Michael Chalos Esq., K&L Gates LLP, on avoiding criminality in ECA zones.  Market updates were provided by David Saginaw of McQuilling Services and Jeffrey Goetz of Poten and Partners.  Dr. Vis, Viswa Labs, gave a tutorial on how to deal with the reality of “cappuccino bunkers”.  Jim Lawrence of MTI Network gave an entertaining but cautionary presentation about the present and growing influence that social media plays in the shipping industry.   Interspersed between the speakers were Q&A sessions where the audience members were able to probe the speakers for further insightful details.

Further opportunities for mixing, mingling and networking were available during a dinner on March 17, which included an Irish Step Dancing display in recognition of St. Patrick’s Day, lunches and a cocktail reception on March 18.