2001 Maritime
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April 4, 2001

IHI, Kawasaki Heavy to merge shipbuilding operations
The Japan Times reports that Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Industries Co. and Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd.say they will integrate their shipbuilding operations into an equally owned venture to be formed on Oct. 1, 2002.

The new venture will have 3,500 employees.

The move will create Japan's second-largest shipbuilder, after Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd.

Last September, IHI, Kawasaki Heavy and Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. announced a three-way shipbuilding alliance. But IHI and Kawasaki have decided to go ahead themselves first, while keeping cooperative ties with Mitsui, the Japan Times quotes officials of the companies as saying.

The IHI-Kawasaki alliance is likely to expand to include Sumitomo Heavy Industries Ltd., as IHI has already agreed with Sumitomo Heavy to integrate production of naval ships, they said.

Hitachi Zosen Corp. and NKK Corp. have also agreed to merge their shipbuilding operations in October 2002.

The series of alliances will consolidate Japan's shipbuilding industry, which currently has seven players, into three major groupings.

Northrop Grumman completes Litton purchase
Northrop Grumman Corporation has completed the purchase of all tendered shares of Litton Industries Inc. common and Series B preferred stock, after receiving all required U.S. and international governmental and regulatory approvals.

"Today marks an exciting new chapter in Northrop Grumman's 60-year history," said Kent Kresa, Northrop Grumman's chairman, president and chief executive officer. "The Litton acquisition creates a $15 billion, top-tier global defense enterprise with 80,000 employees worldwide."

Kresa termed Litton "a superb strategic fit that offers tremendous synergies with existing Northrop Grumman businesses."

"Litton elevates Northrop Grumman to a defense electronics powerhouse and one of the largest providers of information technology for the federal government," Kresa said. "It also gives us the new prime capability of shipbuilding, making us the largest supplier of non-nuclear surface ships for the U.S. Navy. Litton also adds world-class capabilities in the commercial electronics arena."

To welcome Litton employees to Northrop Grumman, Kresa is touring Litton's facilities, beginning today in Pascagoula, Miss., home of the Ingalls shipyard. On the trip, he will also visit the Avondale shipyard in New Orleans, La.

Under a definitive agreement signed by the two companies, the value of the Litton acquisition is approximately $5.1 billion, which includes the assumption of Litton's $1.3 billion in net debt.

AGIP Petroli chooses Bunkerstem for eTrading of marine fuels
Italy's AGIP Petroli, has chosen the Bunkerstem e trading service to trade marine fuels in all Italian ports.

Emilio Merlino, marine manager of AGIP Petroli says: "We have talked about this for a long time now, and the time had come to make a decision on what to do with eCommerce." He said Bunkerstem was chosen because of its track record.

AGIP Petroli will offer supply of all grades of marine fuels in major as well as minor Italian ports, delivered on seller's terms and conditions.

MTN delivers distance training to Holland American passengers
Verestar subsidiary Maritime Telecommunications Network is to provide Holland America's m.s. Veendam,with the capability to broadcast live shore-side training seminars onboard their vessel.

Live seminars will be broadcast using MTN’s C-Band Satellite Network, to the m.s. Veendam and hundreds of offices nationwide for a major insurance company, which has chartered the m.s. Veendam for Panama Canal Cruises. MTN’s advanced broadcasting capabilities add value to its customers’ service offerings for full ship charter sales to businesses. Cruise line passengers and on-shore affiliates will be able to view the four live broadcasts, simultaneously. Seminars are currently scheduled to commence in April.

"Holland America is a leader in providing incentive cruises to companies of all sizes,’’ said David Giersdorf the line's senior VP of marketing and sales. "This live broadcast is an innovative way in which we can meet the needs of our groups onboard. It provides value to the incentive cruise experience aboard Holland America Line.’’

MTN will provide the network, specialized equipment, and engineers, both onboard the m.s. Veendam and onshore at the broadcast facility. The live seminars will be transmitted from a broadcasting facility in Bloomington, Illinois. From this location, MTN will uplink the satellite signal and downlink to the Verestar Satellite Network Access Point (SNAP) in Washington, D.C. Once encoded to MPEG-2 Digital Video Format, the signal will be uplinked using MTN’s C-Band Satellite Network, then sent directly to the m.s. Veendam, where MTN’s broadcast equipment and personnel will receive and route the live broadcast to the ships’ cinema center.

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